Alberta Team’s Pulse Pop Takes Top Spot at Mission: IMPULSEIBLE National Championships JUL 16 2014 | Consumers and Producers | Event and News Release
The Alberta creators of Pulse Pops declared their mission accomplished when they were awarded the top prize at the national Mission: IMPULSEIBLE competition in Saskatoon recently.
The University of Alberta team’s Pulse Pops thoroughly impressed the judges at the Pulse & Special Crops Convention 2014, said Executive Director Leanne Fischbuch of the Alberta Pulse Growers (APG), which co-sponsors the competition for post-secondary students. The frozen Pulse Pop is composed of chickpeas, pea butter and soy nuts wrapped with black bean and cacao, and then rolled in chocolate and coconut.
“Congratulations to Team Alberta on the success of their decadent Pulse Pops, which are delicious for adults as well as kids,” Fischbuch said. “The national competition was intense, but Team Alberta’s Pulse Pops managed to edge out inventive and tasty culinary creations from across Canada. The flavour and versatility of the Pulse Pop for birthday treats or simple everyday snack convinced the judges to name the U of A team as the champion.”
The University of Alberta team consisted of four students: Anastassia Astrakhantseva, Christie Cheng, Diana Nguyen and Stacey Seufert. The team won the provincial competition sponsored by Alberta Pulse Growers and Pulse Canada in March to secure the opportunity to compete against three other regional winners at the national competition, held July 8 in Saskatoon. The national competition was sponsored by Intertek, a multinational company that provides cargo inspection, laboratory testing, certification and related services for the food, feed, ingredients, additives, and agricultural commodity industries in Canada.
“Awarding Pulse Pops (first place) meant so much to the team and I,” Seufert said. “The creativity, hard work and pride we have in our product was acknowledged, all in the common goal of a healthy yet delicious snack that I believe every age can enjoy.”
Seufert explained that the next step for Pulse Pops is to make the product available in the marketplace for everyone to enjoy. The team will start by targeting events and festivals, and work toward placement in coffee shops and grocery store freezers.
“Working with pulses is a rewarding challenge,” she said. “This under-utilized piece of the legume family involves natural colours, a variety of flavours and textures, and versatility that is reflected in Pulse Pops.”
The mission for all competitors was to develop a wholesome and delicious snack food for kids using Canadian pulses, as well as to promote how the product provides nutritious solutions to consumers and industry.
For an added twist this year, the teams were asked to promote their product with a video uploaded to YouTube, Fischbuch noted. In addition to bringing home the national title, Team Alberta also won $2,500.
“Each year, we see an incredible array of innovative food products created using whole and split pulses, pulse flours and pulse fractions like fibre, protein and starch by the students who participate in Mission: IMPULSEIBLE,” Fischbuch said. “This competition demonstrates the potential for pulses in food product development and the inventiveness of our post-secondary students.”