• Hemp-Based Chicken Producer Sustainable Foods Receives $1.25M From NZ Government

    Sustainable Foods, a New Zealand company making alt-protein products including an innovative hemp-based chicken alternative, has received a $1.25 million loan from the country’s government.

    Allocated as part of the Regional Strategic Partnership Fund (RSPF), the capital will help Sustainable Foods scale up within New Zealand, as well as sourcing more of its ingredients locally and ultimately expanding to other countries. The RSPF is part of the government’s strategy to develop a low-emissions and highly-skilled economy.


    Sustainable Foods markets its products under the brand name Plan*t, and is already supplying various restaurant chains such as Countdown, Hell Pizza, and Gorilla Burger. Additionally, the brand is available via New Zealand’s three largest distributors and has successfully gained listings at several major retailers.

    The new loan follows Sustainable Foods’ funding round in April, where it raised $2.15 million to fuel its expansion. The company says it has grown at a huge rate of over 850% since 2019.

    hemp-based chicken
    © Sustainable Foods

    Plant-based in New Zealand

    Research from 2020 found that based on Google Trends data, New Zealand ranked in the top five for veganism worldwide. The number of people choosing meatless diets in the country had risen by 15% within a year.

    The same year, research conducted by Food Frontier in Australia and New Zealand found that plant-based meats are comparable or nutritionally superior to conventional meat. For Sustainable Foods CEO Justin Lemmens, alt-meats provide both a healthier and a more sustainable option.

    “We are delighted to have the support of the New Zealand Government as we strive towards realising our vision of producing leading plant-based proteins for New Zealand and the world, right here in Kapiti,” he said.

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