Nowadays, more and more start-ups are entering the market with new and innovative products. Unfortunately, very few of them manage to become well-established companies. However, LikeMeat has achieved this goal. The Düsseldorf-based company owes its success to its philosophy of providing an enjoyable, modern and balanced diet with contemporary products. We interviewed Managing Director Timo Recker about the company’s creative product range and the vegan market.
How large is your current product range?
The range comprises a total of six organic products – chicken style fillet pieces, döner stlye fillet pieces, gyros strips, minced meat, grilled chicken peppers and pulled pork. There are also the four classics – schnitzel, nuggets and bratwurst, as well as ham sausage made from pea protein. The products are available from food retailers.
What new products are planned for 2018?
We will launch two more pea-based products in the autumn – LikeMeat Curry fillet pieces and Asian sweet and sour (see below). This combines two trends – pea protein & Asian food. Both products are high in protein and fibre, gluten-free and vegan.
Where are you distributed in at present?
In Germany, we can be found in traditional food retailers, i.e. REWE, EDEKA, Kaufland, HIT, Globus and Netto. Since 2016, we have also been exporting our products to Scandinavia. Austria and Switzerland followed suit last year.
Will you use other types of protein in future?
We are constantly on the lookout for new protein sources to offer our consumers even more variety and diversity. With the introduction of further products based on pea protein, we have already taken the first step towards this goal.
How do you think vegan lifestyles will develop in society by 2030?
If you look at current figures, almost two percent of Germans eat vegan; three years ago, it was about one percent (1). It is a trend that will continue to grow through to 2030, but in my view it remains a niche. However, vegan lifestyles will “normalize” as eating habits become more diverse. This means that vegan products will continue their triumphal procession onto the menu of the “completely normal” consumer. Vegan products will become a normal part of the diet. The driver for purchasing decisions in this case is good taste and healthy ingredients – the fact that the products are also sustainable and plant-based is a welcome side-effect. Consequently, the exclusivity – “these products are only for vegans” – will no longer exist.
However, we don’t want to be misunderstood. We at LikeMeat value our vegan consumers: they are a very loyal and still very important target group.
Internationally, the trend has already made significant progress, and vegan diets have already found a place in society.