8 Thai Alternative Protein Brands To Watch As Plant-Based Takes Off Across The Country

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There’s no doubt that plant-based eating is catching on in Thailand. Mainstream chains and homegrown food techs alike are offering new alternative proteins to consumers who are looking for sustainable and healthier substitutes, while environmental campaigns like the Bangkok Climate Clock continue to drive public awareness about the impact of our diets. As the alt protein industry takes off in Thailand, we’re highlighting some of the players to keep an eye out for, innovating everything from dairy-free sesame milk to plant-based shrimp. 

1. Meat Avatar

Meat Avatar crispy pork (Source: Meat Avatar)

Founding date: 2018

Founder: Wiphu Loetsuraphibun

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

Meat Avatar is a startup on a mission to tackle the environmental footprint of livestock farming with a range of plant-based alternatives, including crispy pork, mince and a fried egg, made from a base of legumes. Currently, the brand is available across major retailers like Tesco Lotus, Villa Market and Home Fresh Mart. 

2. More Meat

More Meat unseasoned plant-based mince (Source: More Meat)

Founding date: 2019

Founders: Kanwra Tanachotevorapong, Kantapong Tanachotevorapong, Vorakan Tanachotevorapong

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

More Meat is a health-focused brand of frozen plant-based meat mince made from mushrooms, non-GMO soybeans, coconut oil, canola oil and beetroot juice. The high protein minced analogue is suitable for replacing meat in a number of dishes, including Thai cuisine favourites such as Pad Kra Pao and spring roll fillings, as well as international dishes like burgers. It is available across around 200 mainstream supermarkets and independent grocery stores in the country. 

3. Krop 

Krop frozen ha gao made with plant-based mince (Source: Krop)

Founding date: 2020

Founder: SeaTech Intertrade

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

Developed by frozen foods manufacturer SeaTech Intertrade, Krop is a brand of ready-made frozen plant-based dim sums. Products in its range, which can be reheated in the microwave within minutes or steamed, include vegan-friendly ha gao, kaprao bao filled with a minced meat analogue, “pork” siu mai and a curry bun. 

4. MJ Plant Based

MJ Plant-Based burger patty (Source: MJ Plant-Based)

Founding date: 2014 (2018 Plant-Based Pivot)

Founders: Theekawin Polchana, Panuwat Gimhin, Pariya Sirikul

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

MJ Plant-Based makes its plant-based proteins out of mushrooms and natural flavourings, and contains no soybeans, gluten or preservatives. Currently, the brand’s flagship product is a vegan-friendly burger patty, made from mushrooms sourced from local farmers in Thailand, and is available in independent stores in Bangkok and Songkhla, as well as direct-to-consumers via its website.

5. Mantra 

Mantra plant-based shrimp cake and minced shrimp (Source: Mantra)

Founding date: 2011 (2019 Plant-Based Division)

Founder: Sirichet Chiraphongwatthana (Pete)

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based 

Mantra is a brand of plant-based ready-made foods, specialising in seafood alternatives that are tailored to Thai cuisine. Some of the plant-based substitutes the brand produces include shrimp cakes, minced shrimp and shrimp balls, all of which can be cooked in curries, stir-fries, deep fried or crisped in the air fryer.

6. Sesamilk Foods

Sesamilk dairy-free milk alternatives (Source: Sesamilk Foods)

Founding date: 2019

Founder: Tangyingwattana Co.

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

Sesamilk is a brand of 100% pure sesame milk made using premium-grade locally grown Thai sesame seeds. Its dairy-free alternative is billed as not only healthier than traditional cow’s milk and suitable for lactose intolerant people, but is also more eco-friendly as sesame requires less water than other crops to grow, and is drought-resistant, making it a solution for Thai farmers transition into a sustainable business. Sesamilk is part of Tangyingwattana Co., an established family business in the sesame hulling industry in Thailand. 

7. Swees

Swees vegan soy-based cheeses (Source: Swees)

Founding date: 2019

Founders: Nicolas Frauenfelder

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based 

Swees is a line of plant-based dairy-free cheeses made using locally produced organic soybeans. Its GMO-free and synthetic ingredient-free vegan cheese range, which is handcrafted in Chiang Mai, includes Swiss Swiss Style, Cheddar, Mozzarella, Feta, and Parmesan, all available in block formats that can be grated or sliced. 

8. Let’s Plant Meat

Let’s Plant Meat vegan mince (Source: Let’s Plant Meat)

Founding date: 2020

Founder: Smith Taweelerdniti

Alt protein technology: Plant-Based

Let’s Plant Meat is a vegan meat startup offering plant-based burger patties and meat mince made from non-GMO soy protein, rice protein, coconut oil, rice bran oil and beetroot extract. Its products are available at more than 80 outlets of major supermarket chains across Thailand, including Rim Ping, Tesco Lotus, and Gourmet Market. The startup recently won the Plant Protein prize at the Future Food Asia 2020 conference, where it was recognized for its regionally relevant alternative protein that has the potential to become a leading brand across Asia. 

With thanks to Root The Future, who helped identify some of the startups on this list.


Lead image courtesy of More Meat.


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