Haofood, the leading producer of vegan chicken made from peanuts, says its clean-label plant-based chicken is now available in China.
Made without any artificial additives, preservatives, thickeners, or MSG, Haofood’s clean Carefree Pulled Chickless chicken is now available in select restaurants and via the Haofood website.
Haofood says demand for plant-based food options in China and the greater Asian market is on the rise, making it crucial for brands to “stay informed and adaptable” in order to remain competitive
Carefree Pulled Chickless
The Shanghai-based company, which launched in 2020, says it conducted several consumer studies to better understand consumer preferences. It says the top three cited obstacles to including plant-based meat are taste, unnatural additives, and cost.
The company says its Carefree range addresses these challenges.
“Clean-label products will be more favourable for consumers, as one of the main reasons to choose plant-based products are for health benefits,” Astrid Prajogo, Founder & CEO of Haofood, said in a statement. “The consumer demands for the assurance that they are eating the healthiest and safest food product, and at the same time that it is less harmful to the planet. Carefree Pulled Chickless is healthy and delicious — using simpler and plant-based ingredients produced with our know-how that enables us to create great texture and taste at the same time.”
According to Haofood, even when a plant-based product meets food safety regulations, consumers are wary if it contains artificial or excessive additives. And when plant-based products are more costly than conventional, Haofood says it makes consumers even less likely to add the products to their shopping carts.
Yip Hon Mun, an expert from the alternative protein industry and Haofood’s board member says Haofood’s new chicken offers a clean-label, innovative solution. “With a focus on consumer needs and a dedication to staying ahead of market trends, Haofood is setting a high bar for the industry.”
Larry Lee, Founder and CEO of China Plant Based Food Association likens the plant-based food industry to other lifestyle categories such as cosmetics that he says require “constant” research and development to keep consumers interested. “This clean-label product is exactly what our industry needs now,” he said.
China’s alt protein sector
Haofood’s launch comes as China is expanding its focus on meat alternatives. Last month, China and U.S. discussed the best regulatory processes for the emergent cultivated meat sector. The country also took first place in the 2022 ProVeg Food Innovation Challenge APAC.
Last week, fellow Shanghai-based company, the cellular agriculture startup CellX partnered with the food manufacturing specialists Tofflonto to develop the first cultivated meat pilot plant in mainland China.
The new Carefree Pulled Chickless range comes in three flavors: Original, Xinjiang Spices, and Salt & Pepper, and Haofood says the products are priced on par with chicken breasts and cost about half as much as the average plant-based meat products. The products are available at restaurants in China including 2060, the plant-based fast food restaurant located at Wanda Mall in Wujiaochang, and as pre-orders on the Haofood WeChat store.