Vancouver-made Sushi Quinoa to be featured at TED2019 in a vegan, riceless version of an ahi tuna roll

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      A local company that makes what it calls Sushi Quinoa is teaming up with the New York-based maker of ahimi—a vegan tuna—for a 100-percent plant-based alternative to the beloved ahi tuna roll that will be showcased at this year’s TED Talk.

      Vancouver’s Top Tier Foods collaborated with BCIT’s food development program and the BC Ministry of Agriculture to create the Canadian-grown, non-GMO Sushi Quinoa.

      For TED2019, it’s partnering with Ocean Hugger Foods, which developed ahimi, which looks and tastes like ahi tuna but is made out of tomatoes.

      “In a nutshell, we, along with some students at BCIT, created a quinoa that has the same texture as sushi rice and can be used as a healthy alternative to sticky rice,” Top Tier Foods’ president Blair Bullus tells the Straight. “We are lucky enough to already be used at great restaurants such as Tojo's as well as at some of the largest sushi chains in Canada. 

      “One of the great things about Sushi Quinoa is that it allows the chef to create unique vegan and vegetarian options using quinoa as the high-protein vehicle,” he says. “[Ahimi], this wildly popular product, along with Sushi Quinoa create an option for people seeking a meatless alternative that tastes just like an ahi tuna roll with a similar nutritional profile but without fish or rice.”

      Founded by certified master chef James Corwell, Ocean Hugger Foods specializes in plant alternatives to seafood.

      The new plant-based tuna roll will be served at the conference on Wednesday and Thursday (April 17 and 18).

      TED2019 runs until Friday (April 19) with the theme “Bigger Than Us”.