Bernat-Añaños © Heura

Heura: “The Exponential Growth We Are Experiencing Demonstrates That the Future Will Be Plant-Based”

Bernat Añaños Martinez is one of the most prominent activists in our industry, and the Spanish plant meat brand he co-founded in 2017 – Heura – is equally one of the most active organisations working hard to bring about change in the food industry. We at vegconomist have always been huge supporters of the Catalonian food activists. One of our favourite moments from Bernat was when he spoke in Glasgow at last year’s COP26, addressing the elephant in the room: why were these politicians completely avoiding the role of food in our climate crisis? Bernat appealed to the panel audience: “It is surprising that at COP 26 we are not debating this as one of the main topics… food should be at the very centre. It …


Tyler Huggins, CEO and Co-founder Meati

CEO Tyler Huggins ©Meati

Meati: “We Intend To Be the Final Frontier of Animal-Free Protein, Creating a Superfood Protein Category That Will Change the Way People Eat”

Boulder Colorado’s Meati is creating mycelium-based whole cuts of meat through fermentation – two trending categories in plant-based. One of the most funded companies in the sector, Meati recently launched preorders for two alt chicken SKUs which both sold out in less than 24 hours. “I think we are only scratching the surface of what’s possible,” Tyler Huggins Yesterday the Meati Chicken Cutlet and Crispy Cutlet finally launched in the US with help from chef and Momofuku founder David Chang. And with newly hired Meati president Scott Tassani, previously of General Mills, aiming for $1 billion in Sales by 2025, it’s safe to say this startup is one to keep an eye on and will be making big moves in vegan meat. It was definitely …


Karana Jackfruit Meat Kebabs


KARANA Jackfruit Makes US Debut at Multiple San Francisco Restaurants

KARANA, a Singapore-based food tech startup, announces it has partnered with several San Francisco restaurants to serve its realistic jackfruit meat. The event is the first time Karana’s product will be available on American menus, marking its official debut on the US market.  Three acclaimed restaurants – Empress, Wildseed and Base Camp – will feature KARANA’s plant-based meat in signature dumplings, as a specialty pizza topping and more, with Wildseed adding it to the menu as its current vegan pizza sausage as a replacement to the Beyond Meat sausage. For the US launch, the company will sell its jackfruit dumplings and minced meat to chefs and food service in the Bay Area, followed by the Greater Los Angeles region.   “Our original goal was always to …


© Meati

Meati Launches Mycelium-Based Whole Cuts For DTC Purchase

From today, consumers will be able to purchase Meati‘s mycelium-based whole cuts for the first time. The Meati Chicken Cutlet and Crispy Cutlet are now available across the US via the company’s website. Last month, Meati launched preorders for the cutlets to huge success, with 1,116 sold in the first hour and the entire pre-order inventory gone in under 24 hours. The company says a third product, the Steak Filet, will be launched soon. Meati has also announced a partnership with chef and Momofuku founder David Chang, who will be an ambassador for the company. He will be involved in a range of projects, from consumer education to product collaborations. The partnership will begin with short-form educational content, which will go live on Meati’s channels …


Africa's First Cultivated Meat Burger

©Mzansi Meat

Mzansi Meat to Unveil “Africa’s First Cultivated Meat Burger”

South African company Mzansi Meat is set to showcase what it claims is Africa’s first cultivated meat burger. The product will be revealed at a bespoke event in Cape Town next month. To produce Mzansi’s burgers, cells are extracted from cows by a veterinarian and taken to the company’s lab. There, they are grown in bioreactors, replicating the process that would normally take place in a cow’s body. Finally, the burgers are seasoned to make them ready to cook. Future plans Currently, Mzansi’s burgers are more expensive to produce than conventional meat, but the company told vegconomist in 2020 that it was confident of achieving price parity in some areas within a decade or less. In the coming years, Mzansi plans to open a pilot …


Noodles and Co Impossible Panko Chicken

©Noodles and Company

Noodles and Co. Trials Impossible Panko Chicken in Select US Cities

Noodles and Company, a fast-casual brand specializing in globally inspired noodle dishes, announces a test-launch of Impossible Chicken in select cities in Washington, Oregon and Colorado. The chicken will be featured in both the Impossible Orange Chicken Lo Mein, as well as a protein substitution for any of Noodle’s entrees.  Made from Impossible’s plant-based chicken nuggets, the new item is panko-coated and offers a realistic chicken taste with a crispy exterior and juicy white interior, Noodles says. Nutrition-wise, the chicken item contains 13 grams of protein, 2 grams of saturated fat and zero cholesterol per serving.  The new menu item adds to the brand’s current plant-based options, which include build-your-own noodle/pasta dishes and salads. Noodles states the vegan chicken is part of an effort to further …


More Foods alt meat

©More Foods

Israel’s More Foods Develops Next-Gen Alt Meat from Upcycled Seeds

Israeli start-up More Foods is set to launch an innovative new alt meat product made from upcycled pumpkin and sunflower seeds. More Foods claims its textured products provide a similar mouth feel to that associated with dark meats. Founded two years ago by CEO Leonardo Marcovitz, More Foods’ patent-pending technology allows it to use cast-away fragments of “superfood” seeds produced while making pumpkin seed oil and sunflower seed oil. The Tel Aviv-based company actively works on incorporating other under-utilized ingredients from the food industry to make alternative protein foods.  Working with chefs to assist the direction of development for the company’s products, More Foods focuses on an understandable and short ingredients list, high in protein and fiber, as well as containing no major allergens. The …


Planet Based Foods Hemp Burger

©Planet Based Foods

Planet Based Foods and KeHe Partner to Expand Hemp-Based Meat

Planet Based Foods, which specializes in hemp-made meat products, announces the company has secured a partnership with KeHe, one of North America’s largest natural and organic food distributors.  Through the new partnership, KeHe will become the primary distributor for Planet Based Foods’ natural and specialty grocery channel. Six of the brand’s most popular products – The Original Burger, Green Chili Southwest Burger, Breakfast Sausage Patties (Hot & Mild), Original and Italian Sausage Crumble – will be featured at a price of $7.99 to $8.99 per unit.  Founded in 2018, Planet Based Foods says it is the first company to craft plant-based meats with hemp as the primary ingredient. Using an innovative process, Planet blends hemp seeds with pea protein and brown rice to create protein-rich …


Impossible Foods Pat Brown

©Official Impossible Foods Facebook Page

Impossible Foods CEO Pat Brown Steps Down; Former Chobani Exec Will Take New Role

Pat Brown, the trailblazing scientist who founded Impossible Foods a decade ago, announces he is stepping down as the company’s CEO.  Former Chobani COO Peter McGuinness will take over as chief executive on April 4, Brown stated in a letter posted online.  Despite the changes, Brown says he will stay on with the company as its Chief Visionary Officer and director of the board. The transition is necessary, Brown wrote, because of the increasing difficulty balancing Impossible’s business operations with strategy and innovation.  Brown wrote: “As Impossible’s business has grown in size, scale and complexity, the demands of that business have increasingly encroached on the time I have available to lead strategic initiatives; to communicate our mission to the public and policy-makers; and most importantly, to guide …


VFC Founders Adam Lyons and Matthew Glover


VFC Shares Eco Impact Assessment as US Expansion Gathers Pace

VFC, the vegan fried chick*n brand taking the world by storm, has released the results of an independent impact assessment showing the meat-free range to outperform its animal equivalent across every environmental metric. The news comes as the activism-focused brand continues to expand its plant-based fried chicken in the US market. Laying down a challenge to the meat industry to “come clean and then clean up”, VFC asked Mondra, a body that analyses supply chain data to assess environmental performance in the food industry, to give an independent impact assessment. It found that the conventional chicken product has double the climate impact, uses 24 times more water, and has a 20 times greater impact on biodiversity.  Wrong side of history Speaking to vegconomist, VFC co-founder Matthew …


Veggie Grill Good Catch Tuna Melt

©Veggie Grill/ Good Catch

Good Catch’s Flagship Tuna Line Debuts at Sprouts Markets Nationwide

Good Catch, the pioneering plant-based seafood brand, announces its popular tuna is now available at Sprouts Farmers Markets across the US. Retailing for $3.99 per pouch, the tuna is high in protein and offers the same flaky texture, flavor and nutritional benefits of seafood without mercury, microplastics or GMO’s, the brand says. Sprouts now stocks all three of Good Catch’s shelf-stable tuna flavors: Naked in Water – An ingredient for adding daily protein in meals, can be used as a 1:1 swap for traditional tuna Mediterranean – Features rich flavors inspired by Southern Europe – garlic, herbs, sweet pepper and a kick of spice Oil & Herbs – Ready to eat out of the package, can be enjoyed as a quick meal or snack. First …


Amazon Fresh Chicken Nuggets

©Amazon Fresh

Amazon Fresh Debuts 15 New Plant-Based Meat and Dairy Products

Amazon Fresh, a grocery pickup and delivery service, is launching its own plant-based range featuring over a dozen vegan meat and dairy items.  The Fresh Plant-Based brand is an expansion of Amazon’s Fresh private label, and includes Italian meatballs, chick’n nuggets, meatless patties, sausage and almond milks, reports Store Brands.  According to Amazon, the new products were thoroughly tested to ensure they meet customers’ expectations for taste and quality, and all offer healthy nutritional benefits. The brand’s almond milks contain 50% more calcium than dairy milk, while its plant-based chik’n nuggets, meatballs and patties provide 12, 17 and 21 grams of protein per serving, respectively.  Increasing product demand Amazon Fresh is a service that allows customers to order groceries using the Amazon app or website. …


Eben Bayer, founder of Ecovative & MyForest Foods

Eben Bayer, founder of Ecovative & MyForest Foods. Image supplied

Eben Bayer: “Ecovative Has Engineered Mycelium Structures That Out-Perform Plastic, Leather, Even Meat”

It’s been a couple of years since we last spoke with Eben Bayer, and to say he has been busy since 2020 is quite the understatement. The founder and CEO of Ecovative Design and MyForestFoods Co. (previously known as Atlast) is inarguably one of the most active and prominent global players in the wonderful world of mycelium. Here are just a few of Bayer’s incredible achievements since the last Q&A with vegconomist: Nov 2020: Atlast Food Co launches its mushroom-based bacon alternative April 2021: Ecovative raises $60M in a Series D, for mycelium based packaging, alt leather, and bacon. April 2021:  Atlast Food Co secures $40 million from investors including Robert Downey Jr.’s Footprint Coalition Ventures, bringing the total raise to $100M Jan 2022: The …


Nature's Fynd Breakfast Patties Whole Foods

©Nature's Fynd

Nature’s Fynd Sausages Made With “New-to-the-World” Microbial Protein Arrive at Whole Foods

Nature’s Fynd, a food company using protein-rich fungi to make meat and dairy alternatives, announces the launch of its Meatless Original Breakfast Patties in select Whole Foods Markets in April. Made with Fy Protein, a nutritious protein first obtained from microbes living in geothermal springs, the breakfast patties offer consumers a brand new protein option. With the Whole Foods launch, a large-scale audience will be able to try this first-of-its-kind protein for the first time.  Containing 11 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per serving, Nature’s Fynd says the patties also have 75% less fat than traditional pork sausage.  A “new-to-the-world” protein Using breakthrough liquid-air surface fermentation technology, the vegan and non-GMO Fy Protein can be used to create a vast range of …


The Plantish team © Plantish

Plantish Raises $12.5M for Whole Cut Plant-Based Fish in Alt-Seafood’s “Largest Ever” Seed Round

Israeli startup Plantish, which develops whole cut plant-based fish, has raised $12.5 million in a seed funding round led by State Of Mind Ventures. Other participants included Pitango Health Tech, Unovis, and TechAviv Founder Partners. Plantish says the raise is the largest ever seed funding round for an alt-seafood company. It follows on from the startup’s $2 million pre-seed round last June. The funding will be used to expand Plantish’s team and increase R&D efforts, as well as to work towards commercialisation. The company aims to launch its first product, whole cut salmon, for foodservice within the next two years. The salmon will also be available at popup locations by the end of 2022. Nutritionally equivalent plant-based seafood Plantish was founded just last year with …