- Impossible Foods is an alt-meat company planning to foray into the Australian and New Zealand market. It is a direct rival to the US-based firm, Beyond Meat.
- Impossible Foods has already announced its plans to go public in the US with a US$10 billion IPO.
- Mushroom-based meat brand Fable Food and plant-based burger marker v2food are some of the existing players in the Australian alt-meat market.
As Impossible Foods prepares for its US$10 billion IPO in the US over the next few months, the company is looking to expand its operations outside the home country. The company already operates in the US, Canada, Hong Kong, etc. and is now planning to enter the Australian and New Zealand market.
A direct rival to US-based firm Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods is an alt-meat company and makes meat, dairy and fish from plants to make the global food system more sustainable as this fulfils the demand for meat but eliminates the need to depend on animals.
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The company has also started to post job listings to start recruiting enough workforce to execute its expansion plans. A few months back, the company was advertising for a new Australia and New Zealand Country Manager role. According to the job description, the role will involve managing distribution, new sales and growing existing account in the region.
The first sign of the company’s intentions to expand into the ANZ market came way back in 2019, when it sought approval genetically modified heme from Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ). Under the application, the company sought to be allowed to use soy leghemoglobin in meat analogue products. Soy leghemoglobin is a form of protein that is present in the roots of soybean plants and is not there in the current diet consumed by Australians and New Zealanders.
Impossible Foods will be directly competing in a market that has marked a record year in 2020, reporting a 46% growth on a YoY basis, according to a report by Food Frontier. In 2019-2020, revenue from manufacturing plant-based meat stood at US$6.9 million, double that of the previous year. It also predicts that if the trend seen in 2019-2020 continues, then the industry could grow to US$3 billion business by 2030.
These figures have primarily been driven by the presence of strong homegrown players such as plant-based burger maker v2food, which has a partnership with Burger King across Asia. Other players which have contributed to the rapid growth of alt-meat market are mushroom-based meat brand Fable Food and New Zealand-based chicken and bacon startup Sunfed Foods.
The Australian alt-meat market has been growing at a rapid pace, all thanks to new developments in the food technological space, leading to the development of plant-based meat alternatives. This growing market could be a gold mine for alt-meat players if the industry continues to grow at the pace seen in 2019-2020.