Beyond Meat is expanding yet again, this time with popular U.S. convenience chain Wawa. The chain has launched a new plant-based breakfast sandwich made with Beyond Meat’s vegan sausage analogue across all 650 stores in the Mid-Atlantic states, with expansions into more Wawa locations planned for the next few weeks.
Wawa started selling a vegetarian-friendly ‘Sizzli Breakfast Sandwich’ made with Beyond Meat’s plant-based breakfast sausage across all 650 locations in the states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia on July 31. Wawa extended the availability of the new meatless item to all 220 stores in Florida starting from August 10.
The sandwich will top Beyond Meat’s non-GMO soy and pea protein-based Beyond Breakfast Sausage with egg and cheese. Customers will also be able to order the plant-based sausage by customising their meals on a touchscreen system at Wawa and add it to bagels, breakfast burritos or bowls.
Wawa is a cult favourite brand and we’re excited to partner with them to introduce several new breakfast options made with Beyond Breakfast Sausage. These new on-the-go options not only taste great, but will make plant-based meat more accessible to more consumers.Chuck Muth, Chief Growth Officer at Beyond Meat
“We’re pleased to offer Beyond Breakfast Sausage, a new and innovative plant-based protein option to our customers to continue fulfilling lives as a food and beverage destination for everyone,” said Mike Sherlock, chief product marketing officer at Wawa.
“We know that consumers are looking for more plant-based options and we’re proud to partner with Beyond Meat, a leader in plant-based meat, to offer our customers more choice.”
Indeed, plant-based demand has skyrocketed in recent months due to the coronavirus. While the plant-based trend has been on the steady rise in the past few years, the pandemic has heightened consumer concerns about the safety and sustainability of conventional meat.
The U.S. has been hit particularly hard with slaughterhouse viral outbreaks, prompting the closure of meat plants and a breakdown in the meat supply chain.
While Beyond Meat has been making headlines for its aggressive expansion domestically and internationally, Wawa is noteworthy because of its reputation for its sandwiches that has won it a devoted customer base.
We know that consumers are looking for more plant-based options and we’re proud to partner with Beyond Meat, a leader in plant-based meat, to offer our customers more choice.Mike Sherlock, Chief Product Marketing Officer at Wawa
Compared to convenience store giant 7-Eleven, which has over 8,000 locations across the U.S., Wawa, with its regional reach of 900 stores has over 360,000 Twitter followers while 7-Eleven’s following stands at 125,000.
“Wawa is a cult favourite brand and we’re excited to partner with them to introduce several new breakfast options made with Beyond Breakfast Sausage. These new on-the-go options not only taste great, but will make plant-based meat more accessible to more consumers,” said Chuck Muth, chief growth officer at Beyond Meat.
Outside of the U.S., Beyond Meat has further cemented its position as a leading plant-based player, most notably in China, where consumers battle additional worries over meat due to a deluge of livestock disease outbreaks, from the ongoing African swine fever (ASF) to the resurgence of Div1 shrimp virus.
Since its landmark collaboration with Starbucks China alongside other plant-based players Oatly and Omnipork, the vegan food tech has expanded its reach with select KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell locations in the country. It has also entered the Chinese retail market through the Alibaba-backed Freshippo and later with Metro China chains.
Beyond Meat has additionally made inroads into the Brazilian market, the world’s third largest beef consumer, in partnership with upscale supermarket chain St Marché.
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Lead image courtesy of Beyond Meat.