Tyson Foods (NYSE: TSN), one of the world’s largest meat producers, is ready to join in on the alternative-protein trend. The Company said on Monday its planning to introduce meatless products on a limited basis this summer. It will then roll out the meat substitute on a larger scale in October, ready to take on competition like the Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat’s Beyond Burger.
This move explains why Tyson sold its stake in Beyond Meat (NASDAQ: BYND) shortly before the Company went public. “Tyson Ventures is pleased with the investment in Beyond Meat and has decided the time was right to exit its investment,” the Company said in a statement, according to CNBC. “Beyond Meat provided an early opportunity for Tyson Ventures to invest in plant-based protein products that many consumers are seeking.” Tyson took a 5% stake in the Beyond in 2016 and made an additional investment in 2017. The Company maintains its minority stake in Memphis Meats which uses cells, rather than animals, to make meat.
Companies are jumping on opportunities as consumers are shifting away from traditional meat for both health and environmental reasons. McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) just started selling a veggie burger in Germany, and last week Burger King said its Impossible Whopper would go nationwide this year. In July, Whole Foods will begin selling a burger made by Lightlife, a Beyond Meat competitor. According to Allied Market Research, the global meat substitute market is expected to be valued at USD 7.5 Billion by 2025.