A Family Affair: Wicked Kitchen Acquires Good Catch in New Deal

|Updated Sep 9, 2022

Chefs Chad and Derek Sarno just announced a corporate family reunion. This week, the two brothers (and founders of their own plant-based companies) revealed that UK-based Wicked Kitchen would be reeling in vegan seafood company Good Catch in an acquisition that will create a larger plant-based food company devoted to protecting the planet and making plant-based foods "for all to enjoy." This deal will broaden Wicked Kitchen's offerings to include frozen plant-based seafood products made by Good Catch,

The New England-born chefs developed the two businesses concurrently, one in the US and the other based in the UK, to better serve health-minded consumers and the environment. so Now, the brothers will work more closely together to improve their plant-based food distribution and continue a successful global expansion.

Founded in 2017, Wicked Kitchen has expanded from its roots in the UK to sell ready-made meals and now ice cream from lupini beans, across the United States, Finland, and Estonia. The company offers a wide variety of plant-based products, including vegan mayo, meatless deli meats, dressings, pre-made meals, instant noodle cups, and most recently a line of frozen desserts that taste as good or better than the real thing.

Chad Sarno's Good Catch entered the U.S. market in 2019 as a new launch focused on tasty fish alternatives such as vegan crab cakes, fish cakes, and fish sticks and filets. Good Catch helped usher in a new era for high-end delicious vegan seafood that tastes as good as real seafood but is made from plant-based protein and seasonings. Good Catch shares what's on the label (clean ingredients) but does not reveal its proprietary blend of six legumes that help elevate the tuna to taste exactly like fresh seafood.

“When creating Wicked Kitchen and Good Catch, our goal for both brands was to develop culinary-driven, industry-changing products that would challenge the way consumers think about their food choices and experiences,” Chad Sarno, who is slated to be the Chief Culinary Officer for both brands, said. “By coming together as one team and one mission, we will have a broader positive impact.”

By acquiring Good Catch, Wicked Kitchen's product portfolio will now include 120 plant-based products across several food categories worldwide. The two mission-driven businesses aim to provide sustainable, healthy food to consumers everywhere, and together the Sarno brothers believe more good can be done.

Wicked Kitchen's Global Expansion

To help expand the Wicked Kitchen brand, food industry veteran and CEO of Wicked Kitchen Pete Speranza will lead the new joint venture. In the acquisition, the parent company of Good Catch, Gathered Foods, will transition to be a shareholder of Wicked. With Good Catch's well-researched vegan seafood category, Wicked expects to accelerate its plant-based seafood development.

“By folding Good Catch’s plant-based seafood offerings into Wicked Kitchen’s North American footprint we will have the largest variety of animal-free consumer packaged goods in the industry available at more than 30,000 distribution points,” Speranza said. “The two brands’ product lines complement each other and are 100% accretive, and the breadth of products across departments – from appetizers to desserts and everything in between – allows us to provide great-tasting food that appeals to everyone.”

Good Catch's plant-based seafood is also food service tested. Last July, Long John Silver's launched vegan crab cakes and fishless fillets with the help of Good Catch, marking the first time the fast food chain featured plant-based seafood. This experience will help Wicked expand out of the retail sector into the food service industry.

The Sarnos Are Helping to Make Plant-Based More Accessible

This January, Wicked Kitchen revealed that its sales nearly doubled, a trend recorded by the UK-based supermarket chain Tesco, where Derek Sarno works as the Director of Plant-Based Innovation.

Over the last year, Wicked Kitchen has more than tripled its retail presence. Now, the brand offers its extensive plant-based selection at over 6,500 retail stores worldwide including Giant, Sprouts Farmers Markets, Publix, and 7-Eleven locations. The brand revealed that it plans to debut in Thailand later this year.

Good Catch is available for American consumers nationwide. Shoppers can find the plant-based seafood products at Whole Foods Markets, Sprouts Farmers Markets, and Giants in the United States or at nearly 500 Tesco Stores in the United Kingdom. With the help of Wicked Kitchen, shoppers can expect to see vegan seafood products in more frozen aisles worldwide.

“By bringing Wicked Kitchen and Good Catch together, we are incredibly excited to embrace being true thought leaders in the plant-based space with our approach of creating culinary-forward foods with broad appeal for all to enjoy,” Speranza said. Talk about a good catch.

For more plant-based happenings, visit The Beet's News articles

The Surprising Reasons these Five Country Singers Went Meat-Free

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1. Carrie Underwood Loved Her Family's Farm Animals

Seven-time Grammy Award winner Carrie Underwood has been hailed for her “enormous” vocal range. When it comes to her diet, Underwood’s a fan of breakfast burritos and lots of tofu. She doesn’t shy away from the carbs, either. According to Cheat Sheet, one of her favorite snacks is a toasted English muffin with peanut butter.

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2. Blake Shelton Wants to Keep Up With His Older Girlfriend

Singer, songwriter, and “The Voice” coach, Blake Shelton, 43, has been working to stay fit recently with help from his long-time love, Gwen Stefani, who is a vegetarian and told him to get off the meat if he wants to feel fitter and lose some weight. Shelton has been trying to keep up with Stefani's impressive fitness level, according to an interview Stefani gave this fall. The former No Doubt singer and Hollaback girl is a longtime vegetarian, eats a mostly vegan diet, and is super fit-- and at 50, looks younger than her years. A source told Gossipcop, “Gwen’s told him the way to lose it is to stay the hell away from meat and bad carbs.” We're rooting for him!

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3. Shania Twain Has the Key to Gorgeous Skin

The best-selling female country music singer in history isn’t buying any expensive steak dinners after a performance. The “Queen of Country Pop” has sold more than 100 million records but says she keeps her meat-free diet simple. She is both vegetarian and eats very little dairy -- though at times has said she does eat eggs.


4. Annette Conlon, Folk Artist with a Passion

Americana singer and songwriter Annette Conlon is also a passionate vegan. She started “The Compassionette Tour,” in an effort to bring compassion, social consciousness, human interaction, and animal issues to a mainstream audience.

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5. Johnny Cash, Walked the Vegan Line Late in Life

The Man in Black is synonymous with country music, even nearly two decades after his death (1932-2003), probably in part because of the biopic about his life starring vegan actor Joaquin Phoenix. Ask any die-hard country music fan (or your dad, for that matter) and they will tell you that Johnny Cash was one of the best-selling musicians of all-time. His scores of hits include “I Walk the Line” and "Hurt" "A Boy Named Sue" and dozens of others. Cash himself was believed to have lived meat-free later in life to help combat some health issues. At Johnny Cash’s Kitchen and Saloon in Nashville, you can also load up on the meat-free dishes as the restaurant boasts a fully stacked veggie menu that includes greens, sweet potato mash, and fried okra.