Meat company Danish Crown—Europe’s largest producer of pork—will debut a vegan burger before the end of 2019. The company already offers so-called “flexitarian” options in the form of products that blend plants and meat, but the new offering will be fully plant-based to capitalize on current global trends. “If we do not recognize the megatrend that consumers are eating less but better meat, we will end up standing in the parking lot outside of the swimming pool unable to come in because it is already full,” Danish Crown CEO Finn Klostermann told Foodnavigator. The company will avoid soy in its formulation and instead focus on building its plant-based burger from peas and beets. Danish Crown is the latest meat giant to enter the plant-based sector. Brazil-based JBS—the largest meat company in the world—recently released its soy-based burgers sold under its Seara Brand, while Canadian meat giant Maple Leaf Foods acquired two plant-based meat companies, Lightlife Foods and Field Roast, for $140 million and $120 million, respectively. Food conglomerate ConAgra is doubling down on its vegan brand Gardein (which it believes is a $30 billion opportunity) with the upcoming launch of next-level vegan burgers and sausages, while OSI Group—a six-decade-long McDonald’s meat supplier—is helping Impossible Foods produce its plant-based burgers to fill orders for Burger King, which will put the impossible Whopper on the menu at more than 7,200 locations on August 8.
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