Japan’s Next Meats Co recently revealed plans to start the construction of an eco-friendly production facility called the NEXT Factory, in Niigata, Japan. According to the company, this kind of large-scale facility specifically dedicated to alt proteins is likely to be the first of its kind in Japan* and will include solar panels and other sustainable technologies. Completion is scheduled for next summer.
The startup, which created the first Japanese barbecue meat analogues and plant-based Japanese beef bowl, recently gained attention for successfully developing an alt egg product called the NEXT Egg 1.0 and launching the NEXT Yakiniku in the US which sold out on the first day of release through its ecommerce site.
This June it announced a partnership with Wayback Burgers, one of the fastest-growing burger franchises in the USA. Furthermore, it is set to co-produce a new product with Kameda Seika—one of the most prominent snack manufacturers in Japan, and also recently signed a cooperative research and development agreement with Nagaoka University of Technology, to study epigenetics and its new applications in developing alternative meat products.
In interview with vegconomist this June, Next Meats co-founder Ryo Shirai spoke about the company’s plans for widespread expansion around the world: “In Europe, we are working on projects in France and Spain, the food capitals, and in China, Hong Kong, India, and Vietnam in Asia. We have secured production lines in China and India, aiming for large-scale and stable supply.
“We plan to start deployment in both locations by this summer. News about Hong Kong is scheduled to come out this month, which will announce that our products will be available at major Japanese retailers.”
He added, “In order to realize our corporate philosophy of “saving the earth,” we need an impact that can save the earth.”
*Based on research by Next Meats, at the point of 7/30/2021