If you’re reading this, chances are, you’ve had a plant-based burger...or 1,000.

Well, even if you sometimes (still) feel left out at the dinner table, it appears that major food companies are taking notice of the plant-based trend—and making changes to their portfolios accordingly.

Companies Push for Plant-Based

As a new report titled Appetite for Disruption: A Second Serving from the FAIRR  investor network recently put forth, 40% of leading food firms, including giants like Kroger, Nestle, Tesco, and Unilever, now have dedicated teams in their companies focusing on plant-based meat and dairy alternatives.

Earning the top accolades were Tesco and Unilever who are best positioned in the booming plant-based and new protein industry with their food portfolios. On the other end of the spectrum came Costco and Kraft Heinz, lagging behind in the vegan protein craze.

As the report also points out, the coronavirus crisis has coincided with a “watershed year” for plant-based market capitalization, with venture investments in plant-based proteins already amounting to $1.1 billion so far this year, which is already double the total investment in plant-based proteins for 2019.

To determine their findings, analysts looked at data from the new online Sustainable Proteins Hub for investors, an interactive tool that allows investors to track food manufacturers’ and retailers’ progress in building “climate-aligned” food portfolios.

A Post-COVID World Looks to Plant-Based Options

"The company data published today is hard evidence that big food brands are vying for their slice of the plant-based pie. They are drastically scaling-up and skilling-up their capacity to research and develop plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy. Tangible goals for a protein transition are being put in place,” said Jeremy Coller, Founder of FAIRR and Chief Investment Officer at Coller Capital in a company press release announcing the report last week.

"The post-COVID landscape has made 2020 a watershed year for the sustainable protein market: the sector has attracted double the investment of last year in just six months. This engagement shows which food companies are putting in place the infrastructure and innovation to benefit from this seismic shift in the ways we shop and eat; and those that will lose out. Investors are watching closely.”

From a taste, sustainability, and investment perspective this much is clear: The best is yet to come on the plant-based horizon.

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