For years, Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods have had a stronghold on the US plant-based meat market, a market that is expected to reach $27.9 billion by 2025. But with growing environmental and safety concerns over meat production and more people opting to eat less meat, new entrants are being welcomed with open arms in the growing market.
Enter Modern Meat, a Vancouver, Canada-based meat alternative company that launched around two years ago and recently went public. Not only are its products 100 percent vegan, but they are also gluten-free, soy-free and GMO-free. Unlike its competitors, Modern Meat’s products are made from real whole foods without any fillers, additives or preservatives.
While many meat alternatives rely on gluten or other binding agents to keep the faux meat together, Modern Meat had a different plan in mind when creating its products. Rather than working in labs, Modern Meat’s chefs, many of whom are local, work in kitchens where they curate high-protein, nutrient-rich plant-based products without sacrificing the taste of meat.
Tara Haddad, the company’s CEO, was inspired to create Modern Meat after noticing a lack of healthy, wholesome, plant-based meals on the market. She told LIVEKINDLY in an interview, “The options available were extremely limited. And they never lived up to their nutritional claim or they simply did not taste great. I decided to take on the challenge of developing my own line of plant-based protein alternatives.”
Most plant-based meat companies have a signature burger, and Modern Meat is no exception. The Modern Burger is made from pea protein and other whole foods, including cauliflower, beets and mushrooms, and it also comes in a slider version. But the brand’s offerings don’t stop there. It also offers Mediterranean-inspired Modern Meatballs, Modern Crumble and Modern “Crab” Cakes, which look and cook just like the classic seafood dish. The company also carries a line of Modern Sauces meant to pair with its burgers and crab cakes.
Up to this point, Modern Meat operated out of Vancouver, British Columbia and its products were only available to foodservice customers. It remained a long-time goal of the company to expand into the US market to launch its portfolio of plant-based products. Just yesterday, Modern Meat announced a co-packing agreement with California-based Real Vision Foods, which has the manufacturing capabilities to produce $25 million worth of Modern Meat products per year.
“This marks a major milestone for our company as it has long been a goal to produce and sell our products in the US,” Haddad said in a press release. “We are incredibly excited to launch out of California with an early adopter of plant-based vegan alternatives. We feel that by moving to an established team of co-manufacturing, our company is likely to see significant growth in our revenues.”
R&D is a top priority at Modern Meat, with its chefs constantly working on new recipes and improving the quality of old ones. One thing the company isn’t trying to do is completely replicate the taste and texture of meat. Haddad told Forbes that many plant-based consumers don’t want a product that simulates meat, but rather a product that has its own unique texture and flavor.
Many products are currently in the R&D and testing stages, with Modern Meat hoping to expand its product line in the coming months. Once pending certifications are finalized, the company plans to launch in retail in both Canada and the US.