Have you heard the rave reviews regarding the new vegan foods the Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat Burgers? They are taking the world by storm. These vegan food products are such game changers that the companies that make them received the UN's Champions of the Earth award, the highest environmental honor bestowed. These products are so hot that Beyond Burger recently expanded it's product in 25,000 outlets worldwide. It seems like we hear about new vegan products coming out on the market every day. Not just limited to specialty grocers, you can now find vegan products in your neighborhood grocery store. Next time you find yourself food shopping take a look at the milk aisle. The change that has occurred in this arena is pretty amazing. Five years ago, there were very few alternative milk products; now plant-based alternatives occupy substantial real estate in the dairy case. Other new groundbreaking products include pork substitute OmniPork, egg substitute Just Egg, and Miyoko's plant-based cream cheese, cheese wheels and mozzarella.
This might be a great time to think about investing in a vegan food product company and here's why.
1. Restaurants are desperate to add vegan items to their menus to meet the overwhelming demand of their customers. Fast food giants like Taco Bell, McDonalds, and Pizza Hut are jumping into offering vegan menu options big time. Companies like these will continue to need new vegan food options as they move further and further into this space.
2. Dairy milk sales dropped by $1.1 billion in 2018, representing an 8% decrease. At the same time, the plant-based alternative milk market is currently worth $17.3 billion and is expected to double over the next 5 years. Plant-based dairy products including hard and soft "cheeses", sour creams, yogurts, and cream cheeses are growing in popularity and the market is wide open for entrepreneurs and investors.
3. Millennials are the driving force behind the increasing vegan product market with Gen Z following at their heels. 25% of college students follow specialized diets and vegan dining halls on college campuses are opening across the nation. High profile vegan celebrities and athletes contribute to the appeal of these products. Demand from these influential demographics will propel these products into the mainstream.
4. Behemoth food product companies like Tyson, Danone, General Mills and Cargill see the writing on the wall and are buying up, or investing in, vegan food producers. Tyson, the largest meat producer in the US, invested a 5% stake in the startup Beyond Meat. Danone is opening up the largest plant-based yogurt plant in the country. General Mills made a $40 million investment into plant-based cheese company Kite Hill and provided capital to small vegan food producers D's Natural and Rhythm Superfoods. Cargill has teamed up with plant-based PURIS in building a pea-protein production facility.
5. Finally, venture capital companies are connecting plant-based entrepreneurs and startups with investors to encourage growth of this burgeoning industry. Stray Dog Capital provides early stage entrepreneurs with the funds and support to grow their vegan businesses. The New Crop Capital fund is investing $25M, along with other investors, into startup companies that promote or produce vegan food products. France-based Five Seasons Venture raised over 60 million to invest in the ag and food tech markets. Venture capitalists are betting on a plant-based future for a return on their investment.
TS Wellness LLC is a consultancy dedicated to improving the health and wellness of employees, workplaces and the greater community.