Plant-Based Meat Sales Have Increased by 23 Percent in the Last Year

Plant-Based Meat Sales Have Increased by 23 Percent in the Last Year

We recently reported that plant-based consumption is up over 300 percent over the last year, according to our Foodable Labs data.

The Good Food Institute (GFI) has also released market data from Nielsen showing that the consumer demand for plant-based products is at an all-time high.

The sales of this sector have recently exceeded $3.7 billion.

"While total U.S. retail food sales grew just two percent over the previous 12 months, retail sales of plant-based foods grew a phenomenal 17 percent during the same time period," writes the GFI.

Specifically, plant-based meat, which has increased in popularity thanks to companies like Impossible Foods and Beyond Burger, saw a 23 percent spike in the last year. In the previous year, veggie-based meats only saw 6 percent growth.

Beyond Meat saw sales spike by 70 percent.

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Will this Wheat-Based “Chicken” Nugget Be the Next Impossible Burger?

Will this Wheat-Based “Chicken” Nugget Be the Next Impossible Burger?

Veggie burgers like Impossible Foods' Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat's Beyond Burger are certainly on the rise.

Listen to Beyond Meat’s unique story below.

But are these burgers just the beginning? Will chicken strips and vegan filets be next?

There's so much potential in the market to develop other plant-based products mimicking meat favorites of consumers. These products appeal to the consumer looking to make eco-friendly dining choices.

With that in mind, start-up companies are developing innovative formulas to mimic the texture of real meat. By looking like something familiar, these products are much more approachable.

In 2017, Christie Lagally founded Seattle Food Tech with a goal of expanding plant-based foods like its wheat-based nuggets to the masses at universities and hospitals.

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White Castle Expands the Impossible Slider to All Store Menus

White Castle Expands the Impossible Slider to All Store Menus

Back in April, the fast food chain White Castle added the Impossible Slider, a plant-based mini burger to the menus of 140 of its chains in New York, New Jersey, and Chicago area.

In partnership with Impossible Foods, the chain has announced that it will be expanding the menu item nationwide.

The Impossible Burger has become wildly popular among vegetarians and flexitarians. The veggie burger that looks so much like the traditional beef burger that it even bleeds.

The ingredient soy leghemoglobin, which causes the burger to "bleed," is made from soybean plants. The ingredient got regulatory pushback from the Food and Drug Administration (F.D.A.) last August but was officially approved two months ago.

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Beverage Companies Explore Broader Horizons with Healthier Options

Beverage Companies Explore Broader Horizons with Healthier Options
  • As “healthier” products hit the market, beverage companies are aiming to stay competitive by adding “good-for-you” options for consumers.

  • Staying on trend whether plant-based or sugar-free is key for beverage companies as they listen to what consumers are asking for.

It's no secret that more people are gravitating towards "healthier" products with "better-for-you" ingredients. Whether we are talking about food or drinks, the trend continues to prevail. As a result of this trend, we’re seeing major beverage players dive in head-first into this space. The opportunities are limitless and the chance to convert customers over to the brand has made these companies eager to develop new products.  

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How Rich's is Helping Combat Food Waste Through Product Solutions

How Rich's is Helping Combat Food Waste Through Product Solutions

“[Consumers] expect the exact same product that they would get if they sat down in the restaurant when they get it delivered to their house… so packaging is really important,” says Diana Schaefer, Associate Customer Marketing Manager for Rich Products. “If you have a sauce or dressed product you want to make sure it’s just as fresh when it gets to the customer.”

According to the National Restaurant Association, it is estimated that 70 percent of customers will be ordering food off of restaurant premises by 2020. Foodable Labs has identified that catering order interest has increased 32.5 percent in the past year with the Top 100 restaurant chains. In this episode of The Barron Report, host Paul Barron sits down with Diana Schaefer to explore the latest catering trends to make sure foodservice operators are not missing an opportunity in the category of catering.

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Rich’s Plant Based Cooking Creme Provides a Healthier Alternative to Dairy-Based Menu Items

Rich’s Plant Based Cooking Creme Provides a Healthier Alternative to Dairy-Based Menu Items
  • Rich’s Plant Based Cooking Creme allows chefs to include plant-based options on their menus without creating a whole new dish.

  • Chef’s can meet consumer demand by modifying recipes with a cost effective plant-based alternative.

It’s no secret that plant-based menu sales have risen tremendously over the years. With the wave of consumer demand seeking plant-based alternatives for health-related reasons, or out of  good conscience for the environment, solutions are increasingly sought out.

As a result of this, more chefs and operators are creating new plant-based menu items that feature a variety of next-generation plant-based products.

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These Vegan Brands See a Spike in Investor Funding

These Vegan Brands See a Spike in Investor Funding

An array of venture capital firms are seeing a lot of potential in the vegan consumer packaged goods sector, so they are making major investments in some of these companies. 

Beyond Meat has quickly emerged as one of the bigger players in the plant-based protein game. Besides being the first plant-based burger to be sold in the meat section at Whole Foods, the company has attracted investors like Tyson Foods, Bill Gates, and Leonardo Dicaprio, along with vegan-focused venture firms like Stray Dog Capital, New Crop Capital, and PowerPlant Ventures. 

“We’ve seen a real explosion in new venture capital firms focused specifically on the food space as well as more traditional tech and venture capital investors making some of their first investments into food,” said Zoe Leavitt, a senior intelligence analyst at data firm CB Insights. “As of last year, the sheer number of unique investors participating in the food and beverage space had more than doubled since 2013. There is definitely a lot of excitement there.”

Another vegan company attracting investors is Califia Farms. Dicaprio and other celebrities like Jared Leto have invested in this milk brand. 

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Elegant Creamy Vegan Dessert Recipes Using Plant-based Milks

Elegant Creamy Vegan Dessert Recipes Using Plant-based Milks
  • Plant-based chef Nathi Toro uses nut milk and natural emulsifiers to make creamy vegan desserts.

  • Using a blender, a food processor, and a freezer, these desserts are totally raw vegan.

In this episode of Foodable’s Smart Kitchen we dive deep into the Raw Vegan realm to create desserts that will delight even the most luxurious of palettes. Our plant-based chef, Nathi Toro,  introduces us to the magic of hazelnuts using both the nut and nut milk to create a velvety hazelnut tart and creamy vegan pannacotta.

How do you make a vegan pannacotta you ask? You'll have to watch the episode for all the details, but the secret is agar-agar, a plant-based gelatin that gives the dessert its signature texture.

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San Diego Foodies are Lining Up at This Fast Food Concept Coined the "Vegan McDonald's"

San Diego Foodies are Lining Up at This Fast Food Concept Coined the "Vegan McDonald's"

It's safe to say that this is just the beginning of the plant-based protein trend. 

As more consumers change their dining habits to consume less meat, the more vegetarian and vegan options like Beyond Burger and Impossible Foods grow in popularity. 

At restaurants, we are seeing more and more vegan-friendly options be highlighted on menus, even in the fast food segment.

Some concepts like Plant Power are ahead of the curve. 

Foodies are willing to wait in long lines to grab a bite to eat from this San Diego-based vegan fast food joint. 

Plant Power saw instant success since opening its second location in Encinitas in 2017. 

“Yeah, we never imagined it would be like that,” said Zach Vouga, the co-founder of Plant Power, to "Thrillist." “I’ve never seen such an intense demand for something. We were slammed hour-in, hour-out, every day once we opened our doors.”

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Plant-Based Food Influencers Want More Delivery Options

Plant-Based Food Influencers Want More Delivery Options
  • Data around food influencers show that plant-based diets are trending

  • The consumer shift to vegan diets is causing restaurants to create more plant-based dishes

The Plant-based movement is in full swing. Plant-based consumption is up 300% over just the last year and restaurants are starting to take notice.

According to Foodable Labs, this year, 51% of chefs have added vegan menu items to their menus, up 31% from last year. These plant-based concepts have increased traffic a whopping 13% year over year in a market where overall restaurant counts are down.

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