British plant-based meat maker Meatless Farm recently opened a Canadian facility in Calgary in order to debut a new business division that will see the startup produce as well as supply plant-based proteins and ingredients to companies across the globe.
According to The Grocer, Meatless Farm recently opened an extensive facility in Canada called Lovingly Made Ingredients, with a second to soon open in the Netherlands.
With these two facilities, the company disclosed its plans to set up a separate plant-based protein supply division. The focus of this division will be on developing and supplying plant-based proteins and ingredients to companies in the alternative protein sector.
Since its launch in 2016, the company has raised a total of GBP£36M (approx. US$49m) from investors through a series of fundraising rounds. Now with an investment of £8.53M (approx. US$11M), the Canada facility will produce up to 14,500 tonnes of plant protein ingredients by 2023 with the brand revealing that it will use cutting-edge manufacturing processes that will help enable a massive reduction in water and energy use, one of the major challenges in plant-based protein production.
Meatless Farm founder Morten Toft Bech, said: “It’s one thing to claim your fame and say you want to be global but if you have to buy your ingredients from someone else it dampens the potential. If any of these ideas we have in the plant-based sector about penetration are ever going to get to the levels [of the meat market] you need to build an infrastructure.”
It’s one thing to claim your fame and say you want to be global but if you have to buy your ingredients from someone else it dampens the potential. If any of these ideas we have in the plant-based sector about penetration are ever going to get to the levels [of the meat market] you need to build an infrastructureMorten Toft Bech, founder of Meatless Farm
The factory will also facilitate Meatless Farm to change, experiment, and evolve its own recipes as well as manufacture plant proteins for certain external partners, across meat alternatives, bakery, snacks, cereals, and many more.
Back in December of last year, Meatless Farm had just expanded retail and e-commerce distribution in the U.S. along with plans to soon unveil a dozen new products and with plant-based sales seeing triple-digit growth in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the company has added all 110 locations of Lidl, Central Market, Earth Fare and Lowe’s Market to its U.S. retail roster, which already includes Whole Foods, Fresh Thyme and Fresh Direct.
The company revealed that it intends to raise US$75 million in 2021 to fuel its growth globally. Bech added that the new investment in the factory will also will be instrumental in helping the brand create proteins with high nutritional value and this, in turn, will give more control over its supply chain thus allowing to keep its intellectual property better protected.
Last month, Meatless Farm and Spanish football team Real Madrid joined forces to reduce meat consumption and encourage sustainable eating habits among players’ and to demonstrate how plant-based foods can be a part of a ‘balanced diet’, help minimize the environmental impact of food, and promote cultural change for one’s wellbeing.
Scalability and co-packers are a key concern for plant-based industry insiders, with many, including Green Queen‘s own editor-in-chief Sonalie Figueiras who wrote that “one concern I’ve had this past year is how few co-packers and private label manufacturers there are globally” and she predicted “a boom in B2B vegan food production facilities across all geographies”.
Apart from Meatless Farm, multinational ingredients firm Ingredion recently expanded its “on-trend” line of plant-based solutions for the F&B industry, adding two pea-based ingredients to its Nebraska-based pea protein factory thus making it the only manufacturer in the region to offer “produced in the U.S. and Canada” plant protein isolate, concentrate, flour and starch to the F&B industry.
Another ingredient provider, Minneapolis-based pea protein supplier Puris Proteins who lists Beyond Meat among its clients, is ramping up its portfolio and is expanding its range with organic pea syrup and sweet lupin flour, along with constructing its second pea protein plant.
Lead image courtesy of Meatless Farm’s Facebook Page.