Noble Jerky, a former meat brand that turned vegan three years ago, has seen its revenue increase by 70% over the pandemic-stricken year as consumers increasingly shift towards plant-based alternatives. The company decided to ditch meat entirely from its business model after recognising that “sustainable agriculture was not feasible when raising animals for food production”.
Canadian brand Noble Jerky has reported a 70% surge in its revenue in 2020, as the plant-based trend gains momentum among mainstream consumers. The brand went fully vegan three years ago, after decades of churning out animal-based jerky products. Currently, Noble Jerky offers five flavours of plant-based jerky, including Original, Chipotle, Sweet BBQ, Teriyaki and Sticky Hickory.
Each bag of Noble Jerky contains 14 grams of protein, made from 100% non-GMO plant ingredients such as soybeans, rice vinegar, spices, black bean sauce and other natural flavourings and comes at a fraction of the environmental footprint compared to conventional beef-based jerky products.
The company says that sales have been rising steadily over the past years ever since it shifted away from animal-based products. Noble Jerky’s products are sold on its direct-to-consumer website, Amazon and several retailers across North America.
We took our three generations of meat drying technical knowledge, along with new developments in plant-based proteins to deliver people the ultimate sustainable plant-based protein that tastes just like a top-quality beef-jerky.Stefan Urbani, Co-Founder, Noble Jerky
Last year, the company revealed that it claimed the top three bestseller spots within the entire jerky category on Amazon Canada.
“After we understood that sustainable agriculture was not feasible when raising animals for food production, we took our three generations of meat drying technical knowledge, along with new developments in plant-based proteins, to deliver people the ultimate sustainable plant-based protein that tastes just like a top-quality beef-jerky,” said Stefan Urbani, co-founder of Noble Jerky, in a statement sent to Plant Based News.
Urbani added that the company hopes that its move to ditch meat will “raise awareness on the health benefits of plant-based diets and products” and prove to consumers that “a plant-based diet doesn’t have to be difficult”.
A number of other vegan companies have also seen their revenues grow significantly amid the coronavirus-stricken year, with swathes of mainstream consumers now switching to a part-time plant-based or flexitarian diet in the name of health and immunity, as well as for environmental reasons.
Famous food tech Impossible Foods, for instance, reported the “biggest operational expansion in the company’s 10-year history” in 2020 propelled by record demand for its plant-based beef burgers. It extends to foodservice companies too, with the likes of American vegan fast food chain Plant Power saying that sales have increased 50% year-on-year in 2020.
Outside of the U.S., vegan meat brand Heura tripled its turnover last year and has doubled its international distribution footprint to thirteen countries, up from six in the year before.
The pandemic-related boost for plant-based foods is likely to become a long-term trend, given recent data suggesting that the majority of first-time purchasers of plant-based foods within the U.S. plan to continue doing so even after the crisis subsides. A separate global survey found that around 4 in 10 consumers around the world now consider themselves flexitarians.
Lead image courtesy of Noble Jerky.