The Beefy Boys vegan burger

© The Beefy Boys

Fast Food

UK Chain The Beefy Boys Launches Its First Vegan Burger

The Beefy Boys, a UK burger chain with locations in Hereford, Cheltenham, and Shrewsbury, has introduced its first vegan option. The Beef Free Boy consists of a mushroom-based patty in a bun with lettuce, onion, gherkin, vegan dirty mayo, and vegan cheese. The launch comes in response to growing customer demand for plant-based options; while the chain does already offer three meatless burgers, they all contain dairy cheese. The burger has now rolled out at all three Beefy Boys locations after a successful trial in Hereford in July. Launched in 2011, The Beefy Boys is said to have a cult following and won two categories at this year’s National Burger Awards. The chain prides itself on using locally sourced ingredients and authentic cooking methods. “Our …


UK-born charity Veganuary has opened its eighth country chapter in Spain.

© Veganuary

Charity & Campaigns

Veganuary Opens Office in Spain to Continue the Campaign’s Global Expansion, Vegan Actor Dani Rovira Becomes Supporter

UK-born charity Veganuary, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, announces it has opened its eighth country chapter in Spain. Moreover, the Spanish actor Dani Rovira recently joined Veganuary as a supporter to spread the message and importance of veganism. With the climate crisis making headlines almost daily, the organization says it is intensifying its efforts to promote planet-friendly vegan diets worldwide. Besides the new office in Spain, the charity has chapters in seven countries: the UK, USA, Germany, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and India. In addition, it has partner organizations in Mexico, Italy, France, Switzerland, South Africa, Australia, and Singapore to run official campaigns and make veganism mainstream. Amanda Romero, the new director for Veganuary Spain, shares that more than five million people, representing 13% of the …


Xampla has launched a consumer brand, Morro, to commercialize its highly innovative, vegan, and eco-friendly alternatives to single-use plastics.

© Xampla

Products & Launches

Xampla Launches Morro Brand for Vegan and Biodegradable Alternatives to Single-Use Plastics

Xampla, a natural material company based in the UK, has launched a new brand, Morro, to commercialize its highly innovative, vegan, and eco-friendly alternatives to single-use plastics. The company, a University of Cambridge spin-off, has developed a technology that uses plant proteins or sustainable feedstocks to create a material that behaves like plastic, providing protection and extending the shelf-life of ingredients and products.  However, since Xampla’s natural material is not chemically modified, it “does things that plastic never could,” such as being soluble, edible, cookable, and completely biodegradable in any environment, including home compost, explains the company.  “Our technology is a world-first, capable of replacing the most polluting plastics at scale and delivering performance parity,” says Xampla. Switching away from single-use plastics Morro’s portfolio includes …


The Old Bookshop vegan pub in Bristol

© The Old Bookshop

Food Service

These Ten Pubs in the UK Are 100% Vegan and We 100% Approve

Pubs are a cornerstone of British culture, but they typically feature meat-heavy menus and drinks that contain ingredients of animal origin. However, this is beginning to change, with a growing number of British pubs keeping the traditional experience while beginning to offer vegan options as consumer demand continues to grow. And there are (at least) ten locations across the UK that are now fully vegan including food and drinks too. Harp & Crown Located near Corsham in Wiltshire, the Harp & Crown offers a range of homemade and seasonal vegan food, along with a selection of vegan ales, wines, and ciders. The menu features dishes such as curried jackfruit, seitan wings, and mushroom and lentil lasagne. Accommodation is also available. The Queen Inn This traditional …


CDMO Extracellular has opened what it claims is Europe's largest contract pilot plant for cultivated meat and seafood in Bristol, the UK.

Image courtesy of Extracellular

Cultivated Meat

Extracellular Unveils Europe’s Largest Contract Pilot Facility for Cultivated Meat & Seafood

CDMO Extracellular announces it has opened what it claims is Europe’s largest contract pilot plant for cultivated meat and seafood in Bristol, the UK.  The facility, established for food-grade operations, will provide essential scale-up and manufacturing services to assist cultivated meat companies in achieving their production goals and mitigating the expense and time associated with building new sites. According to Extracellular, its pilot plant currently has an operational capacity of 200 L and is expected to reach 2,000 L by December 2023. It can produce up to 50t of cultivated meat annually; however, the facility is expected to reach 100t per year. The facility will hold multiple bioreactors from 50 L to 5,000 L and has a planned capacity to hold 10,000 liters. Great consumer products at achievable …


Cathedral City extra mature cheddar

© Cathedral City

Cheese Alternatives

Cathedral City Expands Plant-Based Range With Extra Mature Block & Cheddar Spread

The UK’s bestselling cheese brand, Cathedral City, is expanding its plant-based range with two new products — the Extra Mature Block and the Cheddar Flavour Spread. Cathedral City first entered the plant-based market last year with the launch of its original plant-based cheddar, available in block, sliced, and grated formats. The products quickly proved to be extremely popular, seeing high repeat purchase rates. According to Kantar figures, the cheese alternatives are bringing 68,000 new buyers into the plant-based category per month, and are contributing to 44% of the category’s shopper growth. The new Extra Mature Block has been launched in response to customer requests for a stronger flavour profile, while the Cheddar Flavour Spread provides a cheesy taste in a convenient spreadable format. The launches …


Branston to open potato protein facility

© Branston

Manufacturing & Technology

UK Potato Supplier Branston Prepares to Open “Pioneering” Potato Protein Facility

Branston, one of the UK’s largest potato suppliers, will begin production at its new “pioneering” potato protein extraction facility in early 2024. The company is currently best known for its fresh potatoes, along with products such as French fries. But as demand for plant-based foods continues to grow, Branston plans to expand by producing protein for the food industry. The construction of the site, which is described as the first of its kind in the UK, was first announced in 2021. At the time, Branston reported that it would invest around £6 million in the project, which will exclusively use potatoes grown in the UK. Ahead of the opening, Branston has hired a general manager, Tom Seagrief, to head up the facility. He returns to …


THIS founders

Pete Sharman (L) and Andy Shovel, founders of THIS © THIS

Investments & Acquisitions

THIS Receives Investment from Television Broadcaster ITV, Announces Pieminister Collaboration

British alt meat brand THIS has announced two new developments — an investment from the UK’s largest commercial television broadcaster, ITV, and a collaboration with pie brand Pieminister. As part of its Media for Equity programme, ITV will subscribe for £1.5 million of shares in THIS, with the option to subscribe for two additional tranches of £1.5 million each. In return, the plant-based meat brand will receive advertising inventory on the broadcaster’s channels and streaming service. It marks the first time ITV has ever invested in a food company. The news follows a string of successes for THIS in 2023, including an international launch in the Netherlands, listings at Boots and WHSmith, and the recent launch of plant-based roast chicken for the holiday season. Earlier …


Queen Margaret University develops alternative to palm oil

© Queen Margaret University


Scottish University Develops Sustainable & Clean Label Alternative to Palm Oil

Scientists at Scotland’s Queen Margaret University have developed a healthier and more sustainable alternative to palm oil. Called PALM-ALT, the ingredient is fully plant-based, made from a byproduct of the linseed industry along with fibre and rapeseed oil. Palm oil is considered problematic due to its environmental impact, with palm plantations a key driver of deforestation and habitat destruction in Malaysia and Indonesia. Despite this, the ingredient is still widely used in the food industry and elsewhere, as a replacement with the same properties is currently not available at a competitive cost. The development of a more sustainable alternative has the potential to reduce transport emissions as well as deforestation; PALM-ALT can be made exclusively with ingredients sourced from within the UK and the EU, …


Hoxton Farms opens cultivated animal fat pilot production facility

© Hoxton Farms

Manufacturing & Technology

Hoxton Farms Opens “UK’s First” Cultivated Animal Fat Pilot Production Facility

London-based biotech firm Hoxton Farms has opened what it claims is the UK’s first pilot production facility for cultivated animal fat. The 14,000-square-foot site on Old Street in Central London features specialist cell culture laboratories, a food development kitchen, office space, and communal areas. There is also a workshop for the manufacturing of bespoke bioreactors, designed to produce cultivated fat at a much lower cost than standard bioreactors. These have been developed using Hoxton Farms’ technology platform, which is based on computational biology and mathematical modelling. Price parity with plant oils Following the opening of the new facility, Hoxton Farms plans to expand its team from 40 to 100 people. Additionally, production capacity will be increased to ten tonnes of cultivated fat per year. The …


Meatless Farm OOO ad on bus stop states Trying Times

© Meatless Farm

Company News

Meatless Farm is “Back for Good”, Returning to Supermarkets with National Comeback Campaign & New Product Launch

UK brand Meatless Farm, which was acquired by VFC this June following turbulent times, returns to Tesco shelves this week, additionally relaunching into Sainsbury’s and Ocado, along with an extension to its filled pasta range and a national OOH comeback campaign. The brand’s economic struggles earlier this year, during which administrators were appointed, generated prolific media attention, as such this OOH and digital advertising campaign intends to raise awareness that the Meatless Farm is back in retail for consumers. The message ‘For the Tryers,’ invites the increasing number of UK meat-reducers to ‘give it a try,’ further enticing them to purchase once again with a QR code generating a £2 discount and a Greenjinn money-off coupon. The campaign will run from the 25th September to …


Modern Synthesis and GANNI

© Modern Synthesis

Fashion, Design & Beauty

Ex Adidas Designer Unveils Bag Made from Bacteria at London Design Festival

Modern Synthesis, a London-based biotechnology company, has partnered with GANNI, a Danish fashion brand, to reimagine its ‘Bou’ handbag using the company’s bacterial nanocellulose material. Originally crafted from recycled animal leather, the new iteration is part of GANNI’s commitment to eliminate virgin leather from its products by the end of this year, and is being unveiled at the London Design Festival taking place until this Sunday. Founded by ex-Adidas designer Jen Keane and synthetic biologist Dr. Ben Reeve, Modern Synthesis uses a proprietary biotechnology process that transforms sugar derived from agricultural waste into nanocellulose fibers, which the company claims are eight times stronger than steel. The company joins the ranks of other biodegradable textile manufacturers like 3D-printed Simplifyber and banana-based FOReT and Rashki, who are …


allplants partners with Rachel Ama

© allplants

Products & Launches

allplants Partners With Chef Rachel Ama for New Limited Edition Dishes

British ready meal brand allplants has announced that it is collaborating with vegan celebrity chef Rachel Ama to offer a range of new limited-edition meals. The premium, ready-to-heat dishes are said to be inspired by Ama’s heritage and travels. Four options are available — Chimichurri Portobello Mushroom Bowl, Smoked Aubergine and Walnut Ragu, Double Green Orecchiette, and West African Peanut Stew. The partnership marks the beginning of a new Chef-in-Residence programme, where allplants will join forces with top-tier chefs to develop exclusive plant-based meals. “I’m thrilled to be the first chef to team up with allplants in this way!” said Rachel Ama. “I’ve always wanted to find a way to share my recipes with my community through more than just my cookbooks, so being able …


Colourful plant-based signage at PBWE 2022

© Plant Based World Expo Europe

Fairs & Events

PBWE Europe Reveals Lineup for November Including Veganuary Film Premiere

Plant Based World Expo Europe reveals the conference lineup for the Plant Based World Pulse Theatre, taking place at ExCeL London on 15th and 16th November 2023. Excitingly, PBWE, the largest 100% plant-based trade event in Europe, is set to feature the UK film premiere of “It’ll Never Catch On: The Veganuary Story 10 Years On” (Nov 16, 11:30 am – 12:30 pm), a short film marking a decade of the world-famous vegan movement. The viewing will be followed by a Q&A session with the charity’s founders Jane Land and Matthew Glover. Leadership addresses and panels The theatre will bring together academics, regulatory advisors, thought leaders, and industry organisations, discussing the collective challenges affecting the UK’s vegan food industry and strategies to plan and implement …


NOMO after dinner mints


Sweets & Snacks

NOMO Launches the “First Ever” Vegan & Free-From After Dinner Mint Chocolate

The UK’s leading vegan + free-from chocolate brand, NOMO, exclusively launches a new Mint Sharing Box into Tesco, stating the product marks the first ever vegan after-dinner mint that’s free from dairy, gluten, egg, and nuts.  Crucially, NOMO states that the new product highlights its “mission that vegan and free from consumers are not an afterthought and should not have to wait years for new flavours to be released in a format safe for them to consume”. The brand has been at the forefront of seasonal launches in the vegan and free-from market over recent years, consistently introducing offerings in the Easter and Christmas periods for those who choose not to consume dairy or those with food allergies. This April, NOMO revealed some impressive growth …


THIS Isn't Roast Chicken and Stuffing


Products & Launches

THIS Launches Limited Edition Plant-Based Roast Chicken & Stuffing

After 12 months of R&D, UK alt meat brand THIS has launched a new product — THIS™ Isn’t Roast Chicken & Stuffing. The plant-based chicken crown is made from soy and pea protein, with stuffing in the middle and a sage and garlic melt topping. The limited-edition product is said to be ideal as a centrepiece for a festive meal or a Sunday roast. Another seasonal product by the company, THIS™ Isn’t Pork Pigs In Blankets, is also set to return to supermarket shelves for the third year in a row in the coming months. The news comes as THIS reports that its revenue is forecast to hit £20 million this year, up by over 50% compared to 2022. Furthermore, THIS is now the UK’s …


Squeaky Bean ready meals

© Squeaky Bean

Products & Launches

Squeaky Bean Enters Yet Another New Category with Protein Pot Launch

British alt meat brand Squeaky Bean has expanded into the ready meal category with the launch of two new protein pots. The meals are: Teriyaki Duck Protein Pot — Plant-based duck pieces with teriyaki sauce and piquillo peppers.  Beef Ragu Protein Pot — Beef-style pieces made from wheat and pea protein, covered in ragu sauce and topped with Applewood smoked vegan cheese. Both pots can either be eaten alone or combined with carbohydrates for a more filling meal. They can be prepared in the microwave in just one minute. Additionally, Squeaky Bean is expanding its range of chicken-style pieces with two new products: Chargrilled Jerk Style Mini Fillets — Smoky fillets with a seasoning containing cayenne, pimento, chilli, garlic, ginger, and nutmeg. Sweet Chilli Chicken …


Quorn Foodservice Business Unit announces new brand identity

Paul Jennings, Head of Culinary at QuornPro. © QuornPro

Company News

Quorn Foodservice Business Unit Reveals New Brand Identity

Quorn’s Foodservice Business Unit has announced an “extensive repositioning exercise” and new brand identity. The unit will now be known as QuornPro, as the brand works to position itself as an ideal protein solution for food service customers. The change comes in response to research which suggested that the unit would benefit from having its own values and mission, complementing Quorn’s retail division. According to the brand, the unit has already gone beyond selling frozen food and is now helping chefs at food service outlets to offer sustainable alt meat solutions. Quorn says it aims to be “the best protein on the planet”, becoming more than a classic meat alternative. Starting this month, the rebrand will roll out across the UK and the EU, with …


two scientists working at germany's bluu seafood labs

Image courtesy of Bluu Seafood


Good News for Food System Innovation as the UK Rejoins Horizon Europe

A new agreement has allowed the UK to rejoin the EU’s Horizon Europe research program as an associate member, in a move that could help to propel food system innovation in the country. After previously leaving Horizon Europe due to Brexit, UK researchers will now have access to all the program’s funding opportunities once again, with the exception of the European Innovation Council (EIC) fund. A considerable percentage of Horizon Europe funding goes to food-related projects; for example, the program announced €32 million in funding for sustainable protein research in 2021, and another €25 million for cultivated and fermented proteins in 2022. The EU also funded the five-year University of Copenhagen-led PROTEIN2FOOD project, which aimed to increase the number of plant-based protein products available in …


OCEANIUM announces a $2.6 million raise to scale its proprietary seaweed biorefinery technology


Investments & Finance

OCEANIUM Secures $2.6M to Meet Growing Demand for Sustainable Seaweed Products

OCEANIUM, a Scottish company specializing in cultivating and processing seaweed, announces a $2.6 million raise to scale its proprietary biorefinery technology. Additionally, the capital will help the Scottish company accelerate the commercialization of its seaweed-derived ingredients and materials to meet market demand for sustainable products.  Impact platform Builders Vision led the round with additional participation from new investors, including BDT & MSD Partners and two family office members of the Hong Kong-based Sustainable Finance Initiative — OCEANIUM’s first investment from Asia. Previous investors, The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Green Angel Ventures, backed the company again in this round. Karen Scofield Seal, CEO and co-founder of OCEANIUM, said: “This investment led by Builders Vision will allow OCEANIUM to scale its proprietary technology to meet the growing demand …