The year was 2019.
Beyond Meat went public, grew massively, and reached a valuation of over $10 billion.
The company’s faux meats popped up in quite a lot of places, including grocery chains and various restaurants.
However, by the end of 2019, Beyond Meat’s delayed chicken launch had started to raise questions about growth and business sustainability.
The company was doing fine, though, and even reached a stock price peak in January 2021.
Then the pandemic happened, as did the worldwide inflation that started in mid-2021. For many people being rocked by the inflationary environment, the plant-based meat substitute wasn’t an option.
Beyond Meat was hard hit by all the changes, and by October 2021, the company’s stock had plunged 60%.
Now, it’s 2022.
Beyond Meat has not only cut around 19% of its workforce, but also its revenue projections. The company stock is struggling and several top executives have left — including the COO who allegedly bit off a man’s nose during a fight.
Employees even told The Wall Street Journal that CEO and Beyond Meat Founder, Ethan Brown, rushed timelines, leading to wasted resources and not-so-happy customers.
This prompts the big question…What happened to Beyond Meat?
Businesses fail for many reasons, but what if, in this case, the problem is not unique to Beyond Meat?
What if the idea of plant-based meat substitutes is the culprit?
Kellogg’s Morningstar Farms has seen its stock fall by nearly 15% compared to last year.
Brazilian meatpacker JBS SA is shutting down Planterra Foods, its U.S. plant-based foods business.
So, maybe it’s more of an industry problem, rather than a Beyond Meat issue.
Plus, 1) the current financial situation the world finds itself in is not helping the situation (plant-based meat is somewhat of a luxury), and 2) there are concerns that despite being better for the environment, plant-based meat may not be healthier than regular meat.
What other options are there?
For one, there are meat alternatives.
The FDA also just approved Upside Food’s cell-based chicken — the first cultivated meat in the U.S.
Of course, the dwindling promise of viable plant-based meat is a blow to the sustainable food movement, but there are still options, and where there are options there is hope…