The fake meat industry appears to be in a death-spiral as sales at plant-based ‘meat’ companies Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat have imploded.
As Axios reports, “after years of hype, the tide is turning against the first generation of plant-based protein makers.”
Last year, both companies were riding high – with prime placement on supermarket shelves, and Burger King even adding an Impossible Whopper to its menu.
Impossible Meat even began to branch out – looking to expand offerings to highly processed meats such as chicken nuggets and sausages.
Sales have collapsed, however, which according to a recent Bloomberg report, has resulted in Impossible Foods planning to lay off around 20% of its workers.
Impossible Foods Inc., the maker of meatless burgers and sausages, is preparing to cut about 20% of its staff, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The Redwood City, California-based company currently employs about 700 workers. The new round of dismissals could reduce that amount by more than 100.
Impossible Foods also offered voluntary separation payments and benefits to employees at the end of 2022, said the person, who asked not to be named discussing private information. An internal document viewed by Bloomberg confirmed the separation packages being offered. The company previously reduced headcount in October, cutting about 6% of its workforce at the time. -Bloomberg
Beyond Meat’s sales fell over 22% in the third quarter of 2022, as the company is preparing to similarly cut 20% of its workers. The company has also lost several executives.
According to the report, supermarket sales fell by 15% y/y as of Jan. 1, according to market-research firm IRI, while orders in restaurants dropped 9% in the12 months ended in November, according to NPD Group.
Meanwhile, data from consumer-experience strategy firm HundredX suggests waning interest in general – as the percentage of shoppers polled who have eaten Impossible products and say they won’t do it again has risen.
Beyond Meat stock is also down around 67% vs. one year ago.