When I decided to do this series on soy protein processing methods, calling soy companies and manufacturers became a natural response. I wanted to see for myself–and to show others–what processing methods other companies were using. Did soy companies even know where their soy protein was coming from and how it was processed?
For this series I chose to compare only those companies selling a soy isolate powder.
A Comparison of Soy Companies
There are so many companies out there selling a soy protein powder of some kind. I had to focus my comparisons to just a handful of companies. This chart compares the soy growth and the main processing methods that were discussed in my earlier posts.
We approached all the companies the same way–in a polite manner as though we were a potential customer wanting to buy their product. Danisco and Archer Daniels Midland were aware that I was putting together a blog post of information for my readers. They were both still happy to answer questions.
My goal was to ultimately speak to the soy manufacturer, but that wasn’t possible in most cases. As you’ll see in the chart, my findings are not as complete as I had hoped.
Most of the soy companies we approached were unwilling to share the name of their soy supplier. So then I had to rely on the hesitant answers from their customer service representative. Most of the company representatives were unsure of their answers to the manufacturing questions, as you would imagine. In some cases, they would transfer the call to someone else or send information through email. These are the boxes labeled in pink. In some cases, I quoted them directly where it was most helpful.
Click here to view the PDF file: Comparison of Soy Companies
The Gold Standard In Processing
For us, the gold standard in soy processing is the manufacturer who proves that their product has retained the most health benefits without unwanted side effects. The only way to prove these two pieces is through rigorous testing, clinical trials and quality controls. So far, I’ve only found one company that takes the lead on this. This is labeled in yellow on the chart.
Shaklee Corporation provided the most extensive information on their soy supplements, in part because they are also the manufacturer. Most soy companies do not manufacture their own product, which makes Shaklee a bit unique. Shaklee’s product brief on just one of their soy products, the Energizing Soy protein includes clinical study results done with their exact product. Their Energizing Soy product label also lists all the amino acid amounts found in each serving.
So until we find another gold standard in soy processing, we will compare our results to Shaklee’s information.
Why Are Most Soy Companies Silent About Their Supplier?
It certainly makes you wonder. Perhaps these companies signed some sort of privacy statement with their supplier, and they are simply sticking to their word on that. Could be.
Or are these companies silent to protect their own reputations? If something goes bad with their supplier, they don’t want it reflecting poorly on them. They don’t want any other name associated with their soy protein than theirs. If so, that’s fair enough.
But it’s not really good enough for us as the consumers. We want more information.
We want to know how our food is made, where it comes from, and if we’re getting the quality we’re paying for. We want to know if companies are cutting corners in quality and testing to make a few extra bucks.
What’s A Parent To Do?
If you are new to the benefits of Soy and safe soy supplementation, then my encouragement to you would be to try the gold standard first. Start there. All of Shaklee’s products come with a 100% money-back guarantee.
And if you’ve already been using soy protein powders that are now suspect on quality and safety, then you need to make a switch.
Updates To My Findings
Since I created this chart, I’ve found many other soy isolate companies online that are not listed here. I will post any updates on company or manufacturer information in the comments below.
Please feel free to comment as well if you have any information that I may have missed.