Let's Plant Meat received Thai Prime Minister's Export Award

© Let's Plant Meat

Market & Trends

Thailand Anticipates Rise in Future Food Exports, Driven by Health & Sustainability Concerns

Thailand is aiming for a 2-5% rise in future food exports in 2024, as the global economy recovers and interest in health and sustainability continues to increase worldwide. According to the Bangkok Post, Thai future food exports reached 143 billion baht last year, making up 9% of all food exports. Functional foods and ingredients accounted for the largest share of this figure at 128 billion baht, while alternative proteins were valued at 6.3 billion baht. Medical, personalized, and organic foods made up the remainder. By 2027, Thailand is aiming for future food exports to reach 350 billion baht according to NXPO (Thailand’s Office of National Higher Education Science Research and Innovation Policy Council). Future foods hub A report published last year found that the USA …

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Thailand plant-based meat manufacturing

Image: PTT Public Company

Manufacturing & Technology

Plant & Bean Opens New Plant-Based Meat Facility in Thailand

In 2021, Innobic (the life sciences arm of Thai state-owned energy company PTT) joined forces with plant-based food importer Nove Foods to form a joint venture called Nutra Regenerative Protein Co (NRPT). The new company then made an agreement with the UK’s Plant & Bean to establish a plant-based meat facility in Ayutthaya, with NRPT providing 51% of the investment and Plant & Bean providing the remaining 49%. The facility — which has a production capacity of 25,000 tons and is claimed to be Thailand’s first dedicated plant protein factory — appears to have recently opened. Plant & Bean Thailand told the Bangkok Post that it had already been approached by several food companies interested in collaborations, including US fast food chain Texas Chicken. The …

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Aleph Farms meat on dressed table

© Aleph Farms

Cultivated Meat

Aleph Farms Partners with Biomanufacturing Experts to Build Large-Scale Cultivated Meat Facility in Thailand

Cultivated beef company Aleph Farms has partnered with biomanufacturing experts BBGI and Fermbox Bio to produce cultivated meat at Thailand’s first production plant for cellular agriculture applications. Through the partnership, the companies aim to advance the development and production of cultivated meat in the region by focusing on production enhancement, cost optimization, and operational scale-up. BBGI is a Bio-Based Green Innovation company that manufactures and distributes bio-based fuel and high-value and well-being products. Fermbox Bio is a synthetic biology research and manufacturing company leveraging microbial fermentation and synthetic biology to create sustainable products, including cell media ingredients. Both companies have extensive experience in large-scale biomanufacturing design and operation.  “We are excited to be part of this partnership — bringing together people and companies from across the world with …

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Smith, founder of Let's Eat Plants, with Prime Minister's award

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Company News

Let’s Plant Meat Receives Prestigious Thai Prime Minister’s Export Award

Thailand-based alt meat brand Let’s Plant Meat has received the prestigious Prime Minister’s Export Award in the Best Thai Brand category. Mr. Smith Taweelerdniti, CEO of Let’s Plant Meat and Managing Director of its parent company, Nithi Foods, received the award in person from Prime Minister Mr. Srettha Thavisin. The award ceremony took place on November 9 at the Government House of Thailand. The Prime Minister’s Export Award was established in 1992 and recognizes outstanding Thai exporters. Let’s Plant Meat has received the accolade for exporting its plant-based meat products to several Asian countries, including Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Japan, and Hong Kong. “I am honored and excited for the PM Export Award because now plant-based meat alternatives, which are good …

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Wen Day Thailand group shot

Image courtesy of Let's Plant Meat

Charity & Campaigns

Groundbreaking “Wen Day on Wednesday” Campaign Will Promote Future Foods in Thailand

The Thai Future Food Trade Association has joined forces with its members and Informa Markets Thailand to launch a campaign called “Wen Day on Wednesday”. In the Thai language, “wen” means “avoid” or “skip”. Inspired by Meatless Monday, the campaign aims to encourage Thai consumers and food service operators — including schools, hotels, and hospitals — to offer future foods every Wednesday. According to the Thai Future Food Trade Association, Thailand has numerous companies innovating in this area, helping to meet demand both domestically and abroad. The country is said to be working to become a global leader in the future foods sector, but this will require the consumption of these products to increase significantly. Numerous future food brands have supported the launch of Wen …

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© Kindness

Meat- and Fish Alternatives

Thai Startup Kindness Exports to 25+ Countries With 4000t Annual Output

Kindness is a plant-based food tech startup based in Thailand, with a fun tagline, “Let’s go Beyond the Impossible,” tipping its hat to its biggest international peers. Kindness offers ready plant-based formulas and product development and plant protein consultancy to brands and manufacturers that “desire to innovate within the vegan protein space.” With 30 years of combined experience in plant-based food production, Kindness claims its R&D team has developed 300-ready formulas using soy, wheat, konjac, and pea protein, which other companies can leverage to expand their current CPG offer or develop innovative products. A non-animal-derived diet Founded by Mike Yang, the Thai startup aims to develop high-quality, plant-based foods at a competitive cost to propel consumers’ adoption of a non-animal-derived diet. With the brand’s plant-based formulas, …

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range of vegan cheeses made by sweets

© Swees Plant-Based Foods

Manufacturing & Technology

Swees to Open “Thailand’s First” Fully Vegan Cheese Factory

Thai vegan cheese startup Swees has announced it will soon open what it claims is Thailand’s first fully vegan cheese factory. The Chiang Mai-based company has also revealed it is preparing for a seed funding round, which will launch on November 1. The new facility will open in early 2023, enabling higher production volumes that will allow Swees to expand into the local market and initiate its first product exports in the APAC region. “The opening of the plant-based cheese factory in Thailand is historical in all ramifications, as it is designed as a sustainable new production facility to produce vegan cheese for Thailand and save the environment. Studies reveal that plant-based cheese releases 80% fewer CO2 emissions compared to dairy cheese,” said founder Nicolas …

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Pete Speranza, Sarno brothers

© Wicked Kitchen/Good Catch

Investments & Acquisitions

Wicked Kitchen Raises $20M From Investors Including Woody Harrelson

Wicked Kitchen announces today that it has raised $20 million from investors including actor Woody Harrelson, and reports that it has more than tripled its YOY sales growth.   Today’s news comes three weeks after the announcement that Wicked, established by Derek and Chad Sarno, has acquired plant-based seafood company Good Catch — also founded by the Sarno brothers — expanding the company’s multi-category range to include the Good Catch portfolio of frozen and ambient vegan seafood products. New investors include Ahimsa VC of India, NRPT of Thailand (where Wicked is set to introduce 17 products), as well as actor Woody Harrelson. Harrelson, a vegan advocate, invested in Good Catch back in 2020, and also participated in a Series A round for Orange County vegan …

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Meat Zero products

©Meat Zero

Company News

Thai Meat Giant CP Foods Wins Award for Plant-Based MEAT ZERO Products

Thailand-based meat giant CP Foods has received Superior Taste Awards for two of its plant-based MEAT ZERO products — Nuggets and Garlic & Herb Patties. The awards were held in Brussels, Belgium, featuring a jury of over 200 industry experts. The patties received one star, rated as Notable, while the nuggets were awarded three stars, meaning Exceptional. This is the first year CP Foods has been successful at the awards. MEAT ZERO products are made from pea, wheat, and corn, with high-moisture extrusion used to replicate the fibrous texture of meat. CP Foods says that the nuggets are indistinguishable from conventional chicken nuggets, while the patties are ideal for making katsu burgers. CP Foods and alt-protein After selling over four million units in Thailand, MEAT …

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V Foods

© V Foods

Products & Launches

V Foods Shuns Alt Meat for Whole Veggie Range in Thailand 

Thai plant-based producer V Foods has launched a new range of vegetable whole foods products, focusing on health and convenience rather than meat alternatives. Called the 100% Whole Veggie Bites range, the Thai brand is looking to focus on the appeal of whole foods to draw in consumers still skeptical of the plant-based movement.  Noting the impressive growth of the alt protein market in Thailand, V Foods has identified a gap in the sector for a health-focused range. The brand, known for its V Farm corn-based products, has noted increasing numbers of plant-based fast food products filling the Thai market – burgers and nuggets, for example – driving down costs but offering fewer health benefits to consumers.  The plant-based food and beverage producer V Foods …

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More Meat

© More Meat

Facts & Figures

More Meat: Thai Meat Alternatives Made From Locally-Grown Mushrooms

More Meat is a Thai company making alt-meat products from splitgill mushrooms, a variety that grows on rubber trees in the country’s plantations. The splitgill mushroom has a meaty flavour and texture with little need for seasonings. Despite this, it is rarely used as a food ingredient. More Meat has set out to change this with two alt-meat products — mince and larb tord (spiced Thai meatballs). The company is also planning to launch a range of ready meals. Additive-free alt-meat While meat alternatives created for the Western market are usually pre-seasoned, many Thai consumers prefer to add their own seasonings, which are likely to vary according to the dish. Additionally, Thai consumers are increasingly looking for products free of additives. To cater to this, …

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Interviews

Let’s Plant Meat: “We Saw a 10X Jump in Daily Searches for “Vegan” and “Plant-Based Meat” in Thailand”

Thailand’s Let’s Plant Meat has been at the forefront of the burgeoning plant-based industry in the country since its inception, producing vegan meat alternatives such as burgers, mince, and katsu with locally grown ingredients.  A former winner of Future Food Asia’s Plant Protein award, Let’s Plant Meat products can be found in multiple retail locations across the country, at far lower prices than the imported alt meats of its rivals. With several multinationals now becoming prevalent in Thailand’s plant-based sector, vegconomist spoke with Smith Taweelerdniti, CEO of Let’s Plant Meat, to find out what comes next for the rapidly growing brand. Can you give us a brief background on your journey into the plant-based world? I am the Managing Director of Nithi Foods, a producer …

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Thai Union OMG Meat

OMG Meat ©Thai Union

Investments & Finance

Thai Union’s $30M Venture Fund and $9M Innovation Center Will Usher in Tuna Giant ‘s Alt Protein Future

Thai Union Group – one of the biggest producers of tuna in the world – has set up a Global Innovation Center in Thailand to create an alt protein future for the multinational company. Based in Bangkok, the $9 million facility employs over 100 food scientists and engineers working on alt meat and seafood. As well as the new Global Innovation Center, Thai Union has also partnered with several companies through a venture fund aimed at the production of cell cultivated seafood. The $30 million fund has seen agreements with companies including US cultivated seafood leader BlueNalu and Israeli cultivated meat pioneer Aleph Farms.  Pursuing both plant-based as well as cellular agriculture innovation, Thai Union’s alt protein strategy includes its OMG Meat brand, launched in …

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Lypid Bacon Fat Sizzling

©Lypid

Company News

Thai Meat Giant CP Foods Partners with San Francisco’s Lypid to Make Vegan Fat

Thai pork and poultry giant CP Foods has joined forces with US vegan fat startup Lypid. The San Francisco-based food tech develops vegan fat with an animal fat mouthfeel to increase the authenticity of plant-based meats.  Having launched its popular MEAT ZERO vegan range, CP Foods has been investing more and more into the plant-based sphere. Its latest partnership with Lypid came about as the food-tech startup won the recent Asia-Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit in Singapore.  CP Foods expects to start the commercial phase of this collaboration in the next two years. Having sold over 4 million units since its launch, CP Foods entered the Singapore market recently with alt meat brand MEAT ZERO. The company also works closely with ProVeg Asia to incubate future …

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MEAT ZERO

©MEAT ZERO

Products & Launches

Thailand’s CP Foods Looks to Dominate Alt Meat in Asia as it Launches MEAT ZERO in Singapore 

Having sold over 4 million units since its launch, Thai alt meat brand MEAT ZERO is now launching in Singapore. Coming from CP Foods, Thailand’s largest agrifood company, MEAT ZERO will feature six products in the range, all priced affordably to cater to mass consumption.  Clearly marketed at the growing flexitarian market, the MEAT ZERO brand took more than three years to develop its plant-based meat products. The new range includes vegan nuggets, bologna ham, burger patties, and ready meals. MEAT ZERO uses Plant-Tec process to create a high-moisture meat analog, having previously obtained the intellectual property rights for the innovation. The company claims enhanced appearances, mouthfeel, and texture through the process. Pork and poultry giant CP Foods has invested heavily in its plant-based division …

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More Food Innotech More Meat

©More Food Innotech

Stock market

Thailand’s V Foods Plans Public Listing Following Thai Union Deal

Thai plant-based food and beverage producer V Foods has announced its intention to list on the Market for Alternative Investment (MAI) to raise funds for expansion. Owned by Apirak Kosayodhin, the former Bangkok governor, V Foods transformed into a fully plant-based operation earlier this year to meet rising demand in Thailand.  In June this year, V Foods signed a memorandum of understanding with seafood giant Thai Union Group to develop and expand their plant-based food businesses. Under the partnership deal, the two companies will use Thai Union’s facilities to produce V Foods’ range with expansion into global markets high on the agenda. V Foods holds a similar deal with More Food Innotech, producer and distributor of the More Meat plant-based brand. The MAI is a …

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Cultivated Beef Steak

© Aleph Farms

Cultivated, Cell-Cultured & Biotechnology

Seafood Giant Thai Union Partners with Aleph Farms as 97% of Thais Say Yes to Cell-Cultured Meat

After recently partnering with actor and activist Leonardo DiCaprio, cell-cultured meat pioneer Aleph Farms has now signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with two of Asia’s largest food companies, including the world’s largest tuna producer Thai Union.  Famed for growing steaks directly from animal cells, Aleph Farms has penned MOUs with Thai Union and global food and lifestyle company CJ CheilJedang, to accelerate Aleph’s scale-up, go-to-market activities, and elevate distribution of cell-cultured meat in existing marketing channels across the APAC region. Aleph Farms announced a similar agreement with Mitsubishi in Japan this year. Backed by its recent $105 million Series B funding round – which included the participation of both Thai Union and CJ CheilJedang – Israel’s Aleph Farms is planning an initial market launch in …

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Food Tech Chula

Food Tech Chula - Image Courtesy of Charoen Pokphand Foods

Startups, Accelerators & Incubators

Thai Pork and Poultry Giant CP Foods Supports Young Scientists Creating Plant-Based Future Food

After recently unveiling its new plant-based range called MEAT ZERO, Thai pork and poultry giant Charoen Pokphand Foods PLC (CP Foods) has joined forces with ProVeg Asia to incubate future foodtech startups in South East Asia. The plant-based focused ASEAN Food Innovation Challenge 2021 saw 17 foodtech innovators compete, with two CP Foods mentored projects winning the first and second prizes.  CP Foods – Thailand’s largest agro-industrial food business – has been developing plant-based products for over two years and has the desire and means to make its brands the biggest in Asia. Launched in collaboration with ProVeg Asia, The ASEAN Food Innovation Challenge 2021 was an international competition to encourage young researchers to produce alternative healthy food in response to future food trends and …

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Meat Zero products

©Meat Zero

Products & Launches

Thailand’s Largest AgFood Company Launches MEAT ZER0, Aims to Be in Top 3 Global Alt Meat Brands by 2026

Thai pork and poultry giant Charoen Pokphand Foods PLC (CPF) has unveiled its new plant-based range called MEAT ZERO. As Thailand’s largest agro-industrial food business, CPF has lofty goals of making MEAT ZERO the top alt meat brand in Asia by 2022 and in the world’s top 3 by 2026. MEAT ZERO ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat products will be available at 7-Eleven outlets across Thailand. “MEAT ZERO will be the world’s top 3 alternative meat brand within 3-5 years” Manufactured to feel, taste, and appear like real meat thanks to the company’s “PLANT-TEC” innovation, the new products are expected to appeal to health-conscious consumers, taking advantage of CPF’s customer base worldwide and launching in Asian, European and United States markets. As alt meat gains enormous traction …

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