Article by Joanna Sarah-Freedman
People are debating if meat alternatives are just a ‘fad’ after Beyond Meat announced a hefty drop in sales.
The brand – which supplies plant based protein to eateries like McDonald’s and also sells in supermarkets – is one of the biggest global names in the meat alternative market.
But it recently announced its vegan proteins had seen a drop in 30.5 percent in net revenue in the second quarter of this year.
These figures were announced in the brand’s financial report, and it is safe to say they’ve caused a stir online.
The company is now expecting its yearly net revenue to fall somewhere between $360m (£282) and $380m (£298m), down about 14 percent to nine percent compared to where it was in 2022.
The brand said “softer demand” across vegan meat replacement categories were to blame for its lower sales, whilst rising interest rates and inflation were also contributing factors.
These days, fake meat options can often be more expensive than food it is imitating. For instance, two beef patties from Sainsbury’s cost £1.75, whilst Beyond Meat Burgers are being sold for £4.50.
It comes after Beyond Meat’s competitor Meatless Farm almost collapsed last year, before VFC saved them after they entered administration.
Despite the disappointing figures, Beyond Meat’s CEO Ethan Brown said he still believed his California-based brand would “play an important part of the global response to a climate crisis”, and was also confident about his product’s “health benefits.”
“Beyond Meat Burger fad seems to be fading. Sales are down 30 [percent] or the quarter,” tweeted one person after hearing the news.
Whilst another wrote: “We new it was just a flash in the pan idea!”
However, others didn’t think it was all bad for the whole plant-based industry.
“Beyond Meat is over priced. The market has now been flooded with cheaper alternatives, hence why their sales have decreased,” said a third.
As a fourth agreed: “There’s no convincing evidence here that all plant based food sales are down. There are more options than ever before and beyond meat priced themselves way, way out of the market.”
Beyond Meat has previously had celeb backing from the likes of Kim Kardashian, and it’s still one of the biggest brands in the game.
It’s far from over for the vegan brand, but the dwindling sales have certainly been a conversation starter.
Featured image: Getty