December Highlights from the Plant-Based Sector 01/21
4 January 2021
With the unprecedented and game-changing year of 2020 having come to an end, we look towards the future of the plant-based sector, from AI analysis to Cloud Biology to the ever-expanding horizons of the cultured-meat industry.
TRENDS & PROJECTIONS
- According to an AI-powered audience intelligence platform, the alt-milk category has reached mainstream status in people’s minds, with Oatly leading the conversation.
- More consumers are going plant-based for the holidays, according to a poll commissioned by Eat Just.
- Interest in plant-based alternatives is growing in the Czech and Slovak markets, according to a new study.
- According to the China Daily website, Chinese consumers are developing a taste for meat alternatives.
- The UK’s fastest-growing plant-based meat company, the Meatless Farm, is expanding to mainland Europe with its products available in innovative online supermarkets.
- The UK chain Boots has launched a limited-edition plant-based sandwich range.
- Startup brand Crackd has launched its long-awaited cold-pressed egg substitute in Marks and Spencer stores across the UK.
- British retailer Iceland is launching Greggs frozen vegan products across the UK, including its famous vegan sausage rolls and steak bakes.
- Fast-food chain Wimpy will be serving plant-based Beyond Burgers in the UK at select locations as part of a trial period.
- Burger King has launched its Plant-Based Whopper in Japan, also for a limited trial period.
- IKEA has pledged that 50% of its restaurant dishes will be plant-based by 2025.
- US plant-based seafood-brand Good Catch is expanding in Europe, having secured listings in the Netherlands and Spain.
- Meat giant Tyson Foods, which entered the plant-based sector this year, is eliminating eggs from its Raised & Rooted nuggets and dropping its ‘blended’ burger, which was made from meat and plant-based ingredients.
- US food-giant Cargill is scaling up its European plant-based portfolio with the addition of a pea-based protein.
- Plant-based food producer Plant & Bean will be opening a factory in the UK which will be Europe’s largest plant-based food-production facility.
- Veganuary founder Matthew Glover, together with renowned chef and restaurateur Adam Lyons, is launching a bold, edgy, vegan fried chick*n company, under the brand VFC.
INGREDIENTS SUPPLIERS/NEW TECHNOLOGIES
- Ingredient producer Biospringer is introducing an innovative new yeast-fermentation protein for use in milk and meat alternatives.
- Crop-improvement company Benson Hill has bred a variety of soya beans that contain higher protein and oleic acid, thanks to its Cloud Biology platform.
- GFI Asia-Pacific has released a report that explores new ingredients which could be used in the production of alt-protein products in the region.
ONES TO WATCH OUT FOR
- Cultured-seafood trailblazers Avants Meats, Shiok Meats, and Hooked weigh in on how cell-based seafood can reach the scale required to truly disrupt the conventional market.
- Nick Hazell of Australian plant-based producer V2Food dispenses some lessons on how to help plant-based products hit the mainstream.
- Research from cultured-fat producer Peace of Meat finds that 68% of plant-based meat producers are keen on using cultured fat in their products.
- The UK is backing the development of novel animal-free growth media for cell-based meat.
- The Netherlands continues to be a hotspot for plant-based research and innovation according to Vegconomist.
- FoodDive takes a look at what the regulatory approval of cell-based meat in Singapore means for the industry.
STARTUP & FINANCIAL
- Mosa Meat has raised another $19.7m in order to scale up and continue moving toward cell-based meat products.
- ProVeg and Beyond Animal will be collaborating on the first virtual edition of New Food Invest, the world’s first online conference focusing exclusively on bringing together international plant-based and cultured food startups, investors, and key stakeholders in the food industry.
- China’s Nanjing Weilai and CellX have raised millions for the development of their cell-based products.
- France has launched an €100m plant-protein strategy to “regain agri-food sovereignty”.
In a visit to Israeli cultured-meat startup Aleph Farms, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he “can’t taste the difference”. Netanyahu has also called for a national body to be set up to serve the burgeoning cultured-meat industry.