Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the chicken industry has been overwhelmed with shortages, inflation, and disease. Plant-based food company Alpha Foods just announced that it will combat the rising chicken prices by providing a plant-based alternative, lowering the cost of its signature vegan nuggets beginning on National Chicken Wing Day on July 29th. The plant-based pioneer is working to fill the market gap caused by what the company has deemed “chickenflation,” promising to cut its own products’ cost by every cent that the price of conventional chicken goes up.

Currently, male roosters have started underperforming, which has led to a massive shortage of products coming from the animal-based chicken industry. The market saw prices for traditional chicken wings jump from $1.50 per pound to $3 or $4, giving Alpha Foods the opportunity to undercut the chicken industry’s market dominance.

“In the past few months, chicken prices have skyrocketed, leaving consumers looking for alternative options,” Alpha’s Chief Marketing Officer Kierstin De West said. “By lowering the price of our plant-based chik’n products in line with chickenflation, we’re encouraging people to try something new, without the pressure of changing their entire diet.”

Alpha Food is storming the chicken market on National Chicken Wing Day, planning to position representative outside of fast-food restaurant Popeyes and other locations around Times Square. The company aims to persuade consumers to purchase Alpha Foods’ vegan chicken rather than purchasing animal chicken, underlining the rising cost of chicken products. The company will also offer a 30 percent discount coupon to people at these locations.

The plant-based company also plans to advertise on the iconic NASDAQ billboard in NYC. The full plant-based takeover is an attempt to show consumers how plant-based chicken is the future, especially underlining the rapidly inflating costs of chicken. The company will also feature a full-page advertisement in The Wall Street Journal.

Alpha Foods has joined a rapidly growing list of companies sprouting up to offer vegan protein in recent years. Plant-based giants continue to charge the chicken industry in an attempt to change consumer behavior worldwide. Beyond its chicken products, Alpha Foods currently offers tamales, burgers, and crumbles that can be found at more than 9,000 retail locations across the United States. The company secured a $28 million funding package during its investment round last year led by AccelFoods. That growth came after a $7 million funding round in March 2019.

Earlier this week, fellow plant-based giant Beyond Meat tackled the chicken shortage on National Fried Chicken Day. The company offered customers the chance to try its new Beyond Chicken Tender for free through DoorDash. Other vegan companies have also taken to creating plant-based chicken to fill the market gap. Daring Foods, Field Roast, Impossible Foods, and more have pushed their development to perfect vegan chicken products, especially as the demand for chicken continues to rise over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While fast-food companies race to perfect a new chicken sandwich, some have already started working on incorporating vegan alternatives to the menu. McDonald’s, Panda Express, and KFC have already either started trials or began working on plant-based chicken to compensate for the chicken shortage and the rise of plant-based consumers. Alpha Foods is preparing for this shift and potentially pushing fast-food giants like Popeye’s and its customers to reevaluate its dietary options.

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