In October, Beyond Meat told PBN that the company’s flagship product – the Beyond Burger – will be coming to the UK next year.
During an interview with PBN’s Klaus Mitchell, the company’s Executive Chairman Seth Goldman, said the company plans to make the product available in 2018.
The burger is already available from around 4,300 retailers across the States, as well as numerous restaurants including nearly 500 TGI Friday outlets.
According to Goldman, making the products available overseas is a priority, and the UK is a key target market.
He said: “We have decided to approach the UK market strategically, and are currently approaching potential partners.
“We have plans to go on sale in the first quarter of 2018.”
WATCH PBN’S INTERVIEW WITH BEYOND MEAT FOUNDER ETHAN BROWN
While Goldman declined to name any of the interested parties when it comes to distribution, he claims the brand is looking to enter both the retail and foodservice sectors.
“The plan is to be both, I would say, with more emphasis on retail,” he said in an interview with just-food.
Beyond Meat’s products are currently available in around 11,000 outlets in America, including Target and Walmart.
Its only overseas distribution deal is currently with Hong Kong. The company as yet has no plans to expand further into Europe.
A (highly unscientific) straw poll of vegans shows mixed views around the burger’s impending approach.
While some are excited about the burger’s potential to impress omnivores, others feel it can ‘glamorize’ eating meat.
One said: “After a couple of years of being vegan, the idea of eating something that I have heard ‘bleeds’ beetroot juice quite literally makes me feel sick.
“Why are we trying so hard to re-create meat – doesn’t that kind of say that we believe animal flesh is delicious, and that vegan food isn’t good enough?”
But others don’t feel the same way.
“I don’t think these products are necessarily for vegans,” one argued.
“They are more useful for giving to omnivores who think that vegans only eat grass.
“It is good to show people that they can find hearty food that is really similar to what they are used to – and to be honest, I would definitely try this myself.”
These positions mirror some of the opinions PBN readers shared when the story broke in October.
One user wrote: “I wouldn’t be able to eat that. It looks like a juicy meaty burger to me and it’s a mental/visual thing.”
Another added: “I think one way for people to switch from meat is to mimic what they eat now. Most don’t connect eating meat with animal cruelty.”
Rock God Bryan Adams Says: ‘Go Vegan’
Vegan Brand Field Roast Sells to Meat Industry Giant for $120M: Good News or Bad?