Tyson Foods Unveils Plant-Based Nuggets

Tyson Foods will release burger patties made from a blend of beef and pea protein in the fall

Tyson Foods will release burger patties made from a blend of beef and pea protein in the fall

According to the report, 14% of Australians are 'making concerted efforts' to avoid red meat, whereas 34% to 39% of urban Thais and Indonesians have reduced consumption of animal-based proteins over the past two years due to this.

In a statement, Tyson Foods CEO Noel White said the company expected to be "a market leader in alternative protein", which he said could one day be "a billion-dollar business for our company".

The change comes as many companies are trying to carve out a space in the US alternative meat market which analysts estimate to be worth $100 billion by 2035. For example, Tyson's existing Aidells brand is getting sausage and meatballs that contain 50-60% chicken and 40-50% plants like chickpeas, quinoa and lentils. Both products will go on sale later this year. One Tyson customer, McDonald's, has yet to say whether it will add a plant-based burger to its US menu. As part of its new "Raised & Rooted" brand, both products are based on pea protein isolate, which is also the key ingredient in Beyond Meat's products. On Wednesday, the company launched a line of chicken nuggets, tenders, and patties that are blended with vegetables.

"We're less confident in blended meat/plant products as we believe in the early stages of alternative meat, consumers want to make a simple binary decision between eating meat or not", the analysts said in a note.

The new recipe of the nuggets uses pea-proteins instead of chicken elements.

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Tyson Foods, an early investor in Beyond Meat, on Thursday announced its first line of plant-based and blended meat products, marking the most formidable competitor so far to enter the fast-growing alternative meat market. They are created to appeal to meat eaters, though they are free of meat.

Tyson Foods expects to introduce additional alternative protein products through multiple customers and sales channels. Tyson used to have a stake in Beyond but has exited the deal.

The maker of plant-based meats is facing increased competition from traditional Big Food companies.

"Tyson Ventures is pleased with the investment in Beyond Meat and has decided the time was right to exit its investment", the company said in a statement obtained by CNN Business last month.

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