Beyond Meat Introduces Healthier Burger to Reel In Customers Amid Market Shifts

Beyond Meat is set to introduce a fresh rendition of its plant-based burger in grocery stores this upcoming spring, banking on the appeal of an even healthier version to draw back consumers.

This unveiling, occurring on Wednesday, arrives at a critical juncture for Beyond as a company. The realm of plant-based meat, once abuzz with excitement, has seen a wane in consumer interest. As of Jan. 28, retail sales of meat alternatives have plummeted by 33.6% compared to a year prior, according to Circana data.

Consequently, Beyond has witnessed a significant decline in both retail and restaurant sales. In the third quarter, sales plummeted by 29% over the past two years. Concurrently, the company’s market value has seen a decline, now resting at $463 million, a stark contrast to the $14.14 billion it reached four and a half years ago. Over the past year, the stock has depreciated by 60%.

Collaboration with Stanford University for product development
Collaboration with Stanford University for product development enhances the credibility of Beyond Meat’s new burger.

Throughout its challenges, the embattled company has consistently asserted the superior health attributes of its meat substitutes. Nonetheless, Beyond is now emphasizing that the latest version of its beef contains lower levels of sodium and saturated fat than ever before.

According to Ethan Brown, Beyond’s CEO, this reformulation represents the most substantial enhancement to its recipe since the burger’s initial launch in 2016. “I think the Beyond IV represents a leap forward, versus an incremental step,” remarked Brown in a conversation with CNBC.

The newest rendition of the Beyond Burger, crafted with avocado oil and boasting 20% less sodium, marks a significant advancement. The latest iteration of the Beyond Burger is made with avocado oil and 20% less sodium.

This revamped burger utilizes avocado oil, resulting in a 60% reduction in saturated fat, down to two grams. Moreover, Beyond has curtailed the sodium content in plant-based meat by 20%. Although the ingredient list is now shorter, it incorporates novel additions such as red lentil and faba bean protein.

Market challenges spur Beyond's innovative leap
Market challenges spur Beyond’s innovative leap forward in recipe reformulation and health-conscious ingredient selection.

“For the last several years, there have been a combination of campaigns and other efforts to try to poison the well, regarding the health benefits of plant-based meat,” remarked Brown. “In the spirit of iron sharpening iron, we’ve tried to create products that are now fully unassailable from a health perspective.”

Critics have frequently criticized plant-based meat from Beyond and its competitors, branding it as processed and laden with chemicals. Back in November, Brown speculated on the company’s conference call that proponents of the campaign to discredit plant-based meat as unhealthy likely had ties to the meat and pharmaceutical industries.

Beyond has stated that it collaborated with the Stanford University School of Medicine and registered dietitians, among other experts, to guide the development of the new product.

The company is slated to announce its fourth-quarter earnings after the bell on Feb. 27.

Sajda Parveen
Sajda Parveen
Sajda Praveen is a market expert. She has over 6 years of experience in the field and she shares her expertise with readers. You can reach out to her at [email protected]
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