Is that smell coming from Beyond Meat a delicious charred faux burger? More likely, alas, it’s cash “being burned at an alarming rate,” as Motley Fool put it. The promising fake meat brand, an early pandemic darling, is now struggling to survive inflation and a fickle public.
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In 2020, chilled plant-based meat sales increased by 75%. But sales declined in 2021 and did not pick up in 2022. Beyond Meat in particular rose. And its desperate attempt to save itself with a vegan jerky launch put the brand further in the hole.
Related: Taste-test the latest versions of Beyond and Impossible burgers
“Although Beyond Meat Jerky roughly quadrupled the size of the plant-based meat snacks sub-segment, we had very high expectations for this product and speeds are now below the initial forecast,” said Phil Hardin, CFO of the launch. Furry fool.
That’s a clear downward spiral, with a loss of $278 million in the first half of 2022. Motley Fool predicted that Beyond Meat could go bust in less than a year. There is also the chance that the brand could sell itself to a larger food company. But maybe not if consumer demand for fake meat doesn’t pick up.
Part of the problem is that Beyond Meat has targeted omnivores rather than vegans, capitalizing on environmental and climate change concerns. They place their hamburgers in the meat department and work with Pepsi Co.
But when inflation hit, omnivorous shoppers refused to spend $8.35 a pound for fake soil when the real stuff cost less than five dollars. And are people shopping for snacks at 7-11 generally concerned about their health or the environment?
As Beyond Meat president and CEO Ethan Brown sees it, “We’ve gone from a pandemic to record inflation, the highest in 40 years, and for a sector that’s still finding its feet and still in is kind of the first set of downfalls, it’s a very difficult set of conditions to navigate.”
Via Motley Fool , Supermarket Perimeter , Veg News
Lead image via Beyond Meat