Every year, we make resolutions to eat better, and this year is no different. In fact, 67 percent of Americans plan to make at least three healthy food swaps, according to a recent OnePoll survey commissioned by meat company Godshall’s Quality Meats.
The survey of 2,000 omnivores indicates a growing interest in healthier eating habits, with 37 percent looking to reduce their red meat intake. Why is cutting out red meat a good idea healthwise? For one, its consumption is linked to increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, endometriosis, and more.
However, participants also foresee potential challenges in this journey. The majority of respondents express concerns about the difficulty in learning to cook or prepare healthier options to replace their current food choices.
Additionally, there is apprehension among 59 percent of participants about convincing family members to appreciate these healthier choices. Similarly, more than half (51 percent) anticipate difficulty in discovering new preferred alternatives for their regular meals.
This is the exploratory but cautious environment in which Beyond Meat is launching its newest “Literally The Least You Can Do” campaign, which centers on its plant-based Beyond Steak and features Rizwan Manji—known for his standout role as Ray Butani in the hit show Schitt’s Creek.
In the 30-second ad, Manji takes a relatable approach of least resistance to meeting his goals, like “running” a marathon while crossing the finish line in the back of a pedicab. The takeaway is that choosing Beyond Steak is the literal “least you can do” to meet your resolutions.
A better steak for the new year
The United States consistently ranks among the top consumers of beef worldwide. Interestingly, a new study found that only 12 percent of the meat-eating population accounts for half of the beef consumption in the US—typically men and people between the ages of 50 and 65.
For them, and everyone else, Beyond Meat developed its plant-based steak. Launched widely at retailers in 2022, Beyond Steak is meant to be a one-for-one swap that helps consumers act on goals to eat healthier.
A Stanford study recently found that eating Beyond Steak instead of animal meat reduces heart disease risk. Certified with a heart-healthy check by the American Heart Association, Beyond Steak is also the first vegan meat to meet the nutritional guidelines of the National Diabetes Association Better Choices for Life program.
Reflecting broader consumer trends, the OnePoll survey showed that 57 percent of participants aim to make more ethical food choices, and 56 percent want to develop eco-friendly habits. A significant 63 percent are also looking to swap current food items with healthier alternatives, such as opting for water over sugary beverages (62 percent) and preferring homemade salad dressings over store-bought (59 percent).
“Consumers in 2024 are increasingly looking for brands that show a commitment to environmental sustainability,” Ron Godshall, President of Godshall’s Quality Meats, said in a statement. “This is a key factor in their purchasing decisions.”
In the sustainability department, Beyond Meat just released a report showing that its Beyond Burger 3.0 burger patty produces 90-percent less greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, uses 37-percent less non-renewable energy, and requires 97-percent less land and water than its animal-derived counterpart.
“We want to demonstrate that healthier eating can be simple and satisfying,” Oghoghomeh said. “Beyond Steak is our solution for those wanting to make a change in their diet without compromising on taste.”
Recognized by TIME’s Best Inventions in 2022 as “A Healthier Steak,” Beyond Steak is made from vital wheat gluten (known as “seitan”) and fava beans, a legume chosen for its rich nutrition. Like the Beyond Burger 3.0, Beyond Steak is also much less intensive when it comes to resources and emissions than its animal counterpart.
Beyond Meat takes on big beef
Beyond Meat’s “Literally, The Least You Can Do” concept builds on a series of campaigns, all featuring Manji, that showcase the benefits of choosing plant-based meats instead of animal products.
Launched last year in response to increasing scrutiny over the healthiness and processing of plant-based meats, the company’s “There’s Goodness Here” campaign focused on the wholesome, sustainable aspects of Beyond Meat’s products.
It highlighted ingredients such as fava beans and the environmental benefits of nitrogen-fixing crops, emphasizing the company’s commitment to transparency and sustainability.
Taken together, these campaigns are building transparency into how Beyond Meat products are made during a time when, as the results of the OnePoll survey hint, consumers are more open to exploring plant-based meat alternatives, despite the meat industry’s ongoing attempts to disparage them.