©Maple Leaf Foods

Maple Leaf Foods to Merge Meat and Plant Protein Divisions

Maple Leaf Foods, a major Canadian meat and poultry company, announced a restructuring plan today that will merge its meat and plant protein businesses into a single unit. The move aims to simplify operations and drive growth across all protein categories. During a quarterly earnings call on February 12, Curtis Frank, CEO of Maple Leaf Foods, stated, “While there are still some headwinds to navigate in the very near term, the structural health of our business and our long-term growth potential and to create shared value is undeniable,” He further noted the goal of transforming the company into a “brand-led protein powerhouse,” leveraging nearly three decades of industry experience, as reported by WATTPoultry. The company’s plant-based protein portfolio, which includes Lightlife and Field Roast brands, …


Oato retail launch

© Oato

Oato’s “Category-First” Fresh Oat Milk Expands into Retail, Aiming to Become Biggest Brand in UK Alt Milk Category

Lancashire, England-based Oato is expanding into brick-and-mortar retail through a distribution deal with Booths for its 1L Fresh Barista Whole Oat Drink, with bold ambitions, claiming it is poised to become the leading alt milk in the UK. The oat milk is said to be a category first in that it is not UHT (ultra-high temperature)/shelf-stable, but fresh/refrigerated. “Our latest release is a category first to the dairy alternative category, emphasising local sourcing, convenience, and provenance—qualities that matter to British consumers. Being fresh, not UHT sets us apart,” says Oato, explaining that British consumers have always preferred fresh dairy milk over long-life options, though there are very few available counterparts in plant-based milk. Fresh milk simply tastes better, says Oato, and why should oat be …


©Future Farm

Fazenda Futuro Announces Product Range Reformulation With Improved Taste and Texture

Brazil’s Fazenda Futuro, known internationally as Future Farm, has announced a strategic product reformulation across its entire range. This initiative aims to elevate the sensory experience of its offerings to more closely mimic the taste and texture of traditional meat in a market where cultural resistance to plant-based diets poses hurdles for brands. Mariana Tunis, the marketing director at Fazenda Futuro, spoke about the critical role of technology in overcoming the challenges faced in the development of the Future Burger 4.0, which the company launched last year. The brand has invested heavily in True Texture Technology, an approach designed to replicate the taste and texture of meat more accurately than in previous formulations. “To bring a richness of flavor, we use True Texture Technology, which works …


Meati Mushroom chicken burger

© Meati

Meati Foods Appoints Phil Graves CEO Amidst Company Restructuring

Meati Foods, an alternative meat company known for its MushroomRoot protein, announced the appointment of Phil Graves as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and member of the Board. Graves was recently welcomed to the team as the company’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), but has been quickly transitioned into the CEO position, with co-founder and CEO Tyler Huggins stepping into the role of Chief Innovation Officer. Amidst challenges in the plant-based market, Graves’s experience in financial management, strategic planning, and operational optimization aims to help Meati enhance profitability and streamline its operations. As part of this strategic direction, the company is set to reduce its workforce by 13%, a decision aimed at accelerating its path to profitability without impacting its supply chain. “These changes allow …


Beyond Meat IV

© Beyond Meat

Beyond IV: Recipe Overhaul Represents “Transformative Step Forward” for Beyond Meat

The plant-based industry has faced growing consumer skepticism regarding the health of alternative meat products and myths around how potentially ‘processed’ they might be. This has led to challenges for key players like Beyond Meat. Founder and CEO Ethan Brown recently discussed necessary strategy shifts for the brand as the plant-based movement is up against stakeholders in animal agriculture who are pushing the narrative that plant-based meat is “fake, processed, and full of chemicals.”  Addressing this challenge, Beyond Meat has taken a significant step to improve the taste, nutrition, and ingredient transparency of its products with the latest development in its product lineup, the Beyond IV platform. This marks the fourth iteration of the Beyond Burger and Beyond Beef. Enhanced nutritional credentials Set to debut …



© Juicy Marbles

Juicy Marbles Partners With Grocery Delivery Services in the UK & Czech Republic

Plant-based whole-cut producer Juicy Marbles has partnered with rapid grocery delivery service GoPuff, allowing UK consumers to have a two-pack of plant-based steaks delivered to their doors in as little as 30 minutes. The news comes a year after Juicy Marbles’ first major UK supply deal with supermarket chain Waitrose in a trial intended to last just two weeks. When 86% of the stock sold out within four days, the deal became long-term. Juicy Marbles’ steaks have since seen successful launches at Tesco where they retail at a lower price than comparable animal-based steaks, as well as at Whole Foods UK. Sales have reportedly been strong to date. “We love that Gopuff provides home chefs with a fast, convenient way to get their groceries when …


Meatable Appoints Industry Execs to Board of Directors, Ramps up for 2024 Market Launch

Netherlands-based cultivated pork producer Meatable announces the appointments of Lorne Abony and Patricia Malarkey to its Board of Directors. The Duch startup utilises pluripotent stem cells with patented opti-ox™ technology, enabling cells to multiply and differentiate into mature muscle and fat cells. Meatable says that this technology allows cells to be differentiated in just 8 days and claims this is the fastest process in the world. After raising $35M in August last year, Meatable went on to inaugurate a new pilot facility to expand the production capacity of its cultivated pork platform, and this January announced it had submitted a dossier to hold the country’s first legally sanctioned cultivated meat tasting. An exciting juncture Says Krijn de Nood, co-founder and CEO, “Meatable is at an …


Members of the Board of Management of BayWa AG

© Baywa AG

BayWa, Bindewald and Gutting Mühlengruppe and MULTIVAC Establish AgriFoodTech Venture Alliance

BayWa Venture GmbH, the processing and packaging machine experts MULTIVAC, and Bindewald + Gutting Mühlengruppe are jointly investing around 20 million euros in AgriFoodTech startups. The alliance builds on BayWa Venture GmbH’s efforts, a BayWa AG subsidiary, known for investing in twelve promising AgriFoodTech startups in the last three years aimed at enhancing sustainability in the food sector’s value chain. The AgriFoodTech Venture Alliance’s investment focus spans multiple areas: AgTech / BioTech: Enhancing food production’s efficiency and sustainability. FoodTech: Innovative uses of plant proteins in nutrition, along with advancements in healthy eating and food safety. Circular Economy: Upcycling by-products, minimizing food waste, and promoting biodegradable and recyclable materials. Automation & Digitalization: Increasing transparency in the agri-food supply chain, utilizing robotics, AI, and predictive analytics for …


Ordinary Seafood's alt salmon

© Ordinary Seafood

German Alt Seafood Startup Ordinary Seafood to Cease Operations

The Potsdam startup Ordinary Seafood will sadly cease its business operations due to financial difficulties. The startup was founded as recently as 2022 by Dr. Anton Pluschke with the aim of solving the myriad problems associated with industrial fishing. With its plant-based fish alternatives, the company wanted to transform the global seafood industry and become the world’s leading alternative seafood products company by 2030. Despite its far-reaching mission and goals, Ordinary Seafood has now had to cease operations due to financial difficulties. According to the founder, despite the incredible customer feedback and great response, the financing landscape has changed dramatically in recent times, which has now led to the closure of the company. The shakeout continues Other startups that have had to close doors in …


Ingredion factory workers

© Ingredion

Ingredion Named as a Top Employer 2024 in Germany and UK

Ingredion, an ingredient producer with a global presence, focused on non-GMO sweeteners, stevia, and pea protein, announces that it has been recognised as a Top Employer in the UK and Germany, having been rewarded the Top Employer accolade for both countries for the second year. The Top Employer programme has seen 2,300 employers recognised in 121 countries or regions across the world. Being certified as a Top Employer recognises an organisation’s dedication to creating a better world of work, demonstrated through a commitment to excellent Human Resources policies and people practices. In Europe, Ingredion demonstrates its commitment to its values through an inclusive and supportive workplace through various programmes such as wellbeing initiatives and training sessions spanning health and safety topics such as safe driving …


Marc Coloma, CEO and co-founder of Heura Foods at the Heura Lab

Marc Coloma, CEO and co-founder of Heura Foods at the Heura Lab, image supplied

Following €40M Investment, Upfield & Heura Reveal Plans to Fast-Track Innovation in Plant-Based Foods  

Last week, Spain’s Heura announced it had secured €40 million in what it claimed to be the largest plant-based financing round of 2023. The investors in the Series B round are to form a strategic coalition aiming to fast-track innovation in plant-based foods. Heura and Upfield today explain what this will entail. The work between Heura and Upfield aims to rapidly accelerate the protein transition towards a sustainable food system. Aside from the animal suffering and environmental damage caused by animal agriculture, one of the problems in our food system is its inefficiencies: plant-based crops feed more people while occupying less land. Today, plant-based food occupies only 23% of global agricultural land, yet provides 82% of our calories[1]. Data shows that cutting meat and dairy …


Umiami whole cut chicken fillet in salad bowl


Plant-Based Whole Cut Pioneer Umiami Achieves B Corp Certification

French plant-based whole-cut leader Umiami announces that it has achieved B Corp certification this week. Following a certification process initiated in 2021, the company says it is delighted to belong to the community founded by B Lab, having obtained a score of over 80 points in a scoring system focused on five major areas: corporate governance, employees, customers, communities, and the environment. Umiami acquired a former Unilever facility in the Alsace region at the end of 2022, with the site covering 14,000 m2 offering production capabilities of up to 22,000 tonnes of meat and seafood alternatives per year and creating around 70 jobs in the region. Last October, the company secured €32.5 million in a Series A round, bringing its overall capital raised to €100 …


New Wave PopcornShrimp

© New Wave Foods

US Plant-Based Shrimp Firm New Wave Foods Shuts Down Amidst Financial Woes

San Francisco-based New Wave Foods, a plant-based seafood company backed by Tyson Ventures, the venture capital arm of poultry giant Tyson Foods, ceased activities last November and is currently undergoing assignment for the benefit of creditors (a voluntary alternative to formal bankruptcy), as first reported by Alt Meat. According to a general assignment document, New Wave Foods faced financial difficulties and admitted its inability to repay its debts fully. Consequently, the company decided to halt its operations.  Plant-based shrimp for foodservice New Wave Foods manufactured plant-based shrimp for the food service industry. Michelle Wolf and Dominique Barnes established the company in 2015 to disrupt the $9 billion dollar shrimp market with an alternative made with sustainable seaweed and plant proteins. The company planned to develop a range …


Valentine's steak recipe

© Grubby/Redefine Meat

Grubby Partners With Redefine Meat for Premium Valentine’s Steak Recipe Kit

UK recipe kit startup Grubby has joined forces with plant-based meat company Redefine Meat to offer an exclusive Valentine’s Steak recipe. Available until March 22 as a premium option for Valentine’s Day, the dish marks the first time Redefine Meat’s plant-based beef flank has been available to home cooks in the UK. Previously, the product has only been available at top restaurants in the country. Grubby will also launch a Chimichurri steak dish made with the beef flank across March and April. Launched in 2020, Grubby claims to be the UK’s first fully plant-based recipe kit brand. The company has revenues of over £4 million, with customer spend trebling in the last year. In October, Grubby announced its first retail launch at Tesco, with three …


Believer Meats

© Believer Meats

Believer Meats Continues Construction of Cultivated Meat Facility and Expands Executive Team

Cultivated meat company Believer Meats, previously Future Meat Technologies, is making significant progress on the construction of its cultivated meat production facility in Wilson, North Carolina. When fully operational, this 200,000-square-foot facility is expected to produce at least 10,000 metric tonnes of cell-cultured meat annually. In preparation for its next phase of commercialization, Believer Meats has expanded its executive leadership team with the appointment of three new members: Heather Hudson as Chief Product & Growth Officer, Frida Grynspan as Chief Science Officer, and Marc Shelley as Chief Legal Officer. These strategic hires bring experience across the scientific, food technology, and legal domains, positioning Believer Meats to spearhead innovation and growth in the cultivated meat sector. CEO Gustavo Burger expressed enthusiasm for the new appointments, stating, …


Chef Woo noodles beef in bag

© Chef Woo / Borealis Foods

Borealis Foods Inc, Maker of Gordon Ramsay-Backed Chef Woo Vegan Ramen, Announces NASDAQ Listing

Ontario-based Borealis Foods, a food tech company focused on vegan ramen products, announces today that it will commence trading on the Nasdaq under the ticker “BRLS” on February 8, 2024, following the closing of its previously announced business combination (“the Business Combination”) with Oxus Acquisition Corp. (“Oxus”). Borealis explains its focus on ramen products, stating that the noodles are enjoyed by over 5 billion people in a $40B global market, making it the most widely consumed packaged food on the market. “It is shelf-stable, convenient and offers one of the highest turnover for retailers. The category is ripe for disruption in a market limited by product differentiation, low retail profit margins, lackluster new product development and poor consumer perception,” says the Canadian brand. Ramsay’s touch …


Impossible X US Army

© Impossible Foods

Impossible Foods Partners with US Army Central to Serve Plant-Based Options to Overseas Troops

Impossible Foods has announced a milestone in its partnership with the US military, with the US Army Central now poised to introduce Impossible’s plant-based meat products into its dining facilities overseas in the coming weeks. Impossible explains to vegconomist that the initiative comes as a result of the growing demand for more plant-based meal options across the military. The products have been available in various military food operations for the last few years, says a representative, for example at Walter Reed Medical Center, which the company says indicates a gradual shift towards more diverse dietary offerings within the armed forces. However, this is the first time Impossible has worked directly with the US Army Central to serve its products in various military dining facilities, as …


A collection of plant based foods

Image courtesy of Vegtech Invest

VegTech Invest Engages Companies to Diversify Protein in Public Call to Action

VegTech™ Invest announces its Protein Diversification and Disclosures stakeholder engagement. VegTech™ Invest invests in companies utilizing plant-based Innovation (plant-based foods, cultivated meat, fermented proteins and the supply chains that support them) through their publicly traded ETF. The open-to-the public Protein Diversification and Disclosures initiative encourages companies, including those with emerging plant-based offerings, to advance and grow their plant-centric portfolio of products, enhancing biodiversity and financial resilience.  It also advocates for enhanced transparency from all companies, including those already fully dedicated to plant-based products, to make protein diversification disclosures in line with the FAIRR and GFI framework.  This will communicate to a wider audience the sustainable impact of plant-based Innovation proteins. Protein Diversification for Biodiversity and Financial Resilience By focusing on a diverse group of companies, …


Phil Graves Meati Foods

Phil Graves © Meati Foods

Meati Foods Welcomes Former Patagonia Executive Phil Graves as New CFO

Meati Foods, a producer of meat alternatives using fungal fermentation, has appointed Phil Graves as its new Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Graves brings years of experience supporting brands that align profitability with environmental and social responsibility, serving as the Chief Sustainability Officer at Bass Pro Shops after a seven-year career with Patagonia as the VP of Corporate Development. He also founded Patagonia’s corporate venture capital fund, Tin Shed Ventures, which invests in regenerating food systems, natural ecosystems, and the apparel industry.  Founded in 2017, Meati Foods uses its proprietary MushroomRoot ingredient to create cutlets and steaks. The company recently announced its retail expansion into Super Target stores in the US after debuting in Meijer last year, and its products are now available in over 3,600 …


Schouten Europe and Agrifirm announce collaboration

© Schouten/Agrifirm

Schouten Europe and Agrifirm Investigate Potential of Tempeh Made From Dutch Soy & Fava Beans

Dutch companies Schouten Europe and Agrifirm have announced a collaboration that will investigate the possibility of making tempeh from Dutch soybeans and fava beans. Schouten Europe produces meat alternatives and other plant-based products, while Agrifirm provides products and services to farmers to improve productivity and sustainability. The new collaboration stems from the Bean Deal, which is part of the Netherlands’ National Protein Strategy — an initiative launched in 2020 that aims to enhance the cultivation of protein-rich crops. With support from Agrifirm, Schouten launched a soybean cultivation pilot last year. The companies plans to expand this in 2024, with more growers and different soybean varieties. Schouten then hopes to turn these soybeans — along with other locally-grown pulses such as fava beans — into tempeh. …