Beyond Meat teams up with Carl’s Jr to launch plant-based ‘Beyond Famous Star burger’

By Elaine Watson

- Last updated on GMT

The Beyond Burger has lower saturated fat than regular beef, but delivers 20g of protein. Picture: Beyond Meat
The Beyond Burger has lower saturated fat than regular beef, but delivers 20g of protein. Picture: Beyond Meat

Related tags Beyond meat plant-based meat

The Beyond Famous Star burger – a 100% plant-based burger supplied by Beyond Meat – will be available in 1,000+ Carl's Jr. locations this month starting at $6.29.

Carl’s Jr is Beyond Meat’s largest restaurant partner to date in the US, and the first to serve the patty in its signature charbroiled style, said the company: “Unique to Carl’s Jr., the quarter pound patty is cooked top-to-bottom on an open flame in the Carl’s Jr. charbroiler — packing the delicious, flame-kissed flavor right into the burger and not onto the grill.”

The Beyond Meat​​​ brand – spanning frozen grounds, strips and burgers and chilled burgers and sausages - is now in several thousand retail locations; while its biggest revenue-generator, the pea-protein-based Beyond Burger (which it claims “looks, cooks and satisfies like beef​​”) is now on the menu in thousands of restaurants, hotels, college campus dining halls, and hospitals.

According to a November 2018 SEC filing​, “Beyond Meat was the fastest new-product launch in the history of both A&W Canada and TGI Fridays, and a number of our key partners are investing their own resources to tap into our brand and product awareness.”

CEO Ethan Brown added: "This summer, for twelve consecutive weeks, The Beyond Burger outsold (by unit) all packaged beef patties in the meat case across the Southern California division of Ralph’s, a subsidiary of Kroger, one of the nation’s largest conventional grocers. This outcome surprised us—our aspiration as the only plant-based entrant in the meat case was to simply hold our own.

"And we learned that from January through June this year, nationwide across Kroger, 93% of consumers who bought The Beyond Burger also put animal meat in their shopping cart—an important indication of mainstream appeal."

'We intend to establish production capabilities in Europe in 2020'

The brand also has ambitious international expansion plans, said the filing: “Our recent success with A&W Canada illustrates the growing international demand for our products. We launched in Europe in August 2018 through contracts with three major distributors and have also received strong expressions of interest from some of Europe’s largest grocery and restaurant chains.

“We intend to establish production capabilities in Europe in 2020.  Additionally, for several years we have maintained a presence and generated brand awareness in Hong Kong through our local distributor and expect further expansion in Asia over time.”

According to a filing​ with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in November in which Beyond Meat applied to list on the Nasdaq under the symbol BYND, with an initial offering size of $100m. JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse will lead the IPO.

Net revenue for the nine months ending September 29, 2018, was $56.4m, a 167% increase from the same period a year earlier, with net losses of $22.4m.

The size of the prize

So what’s the addressable market for Beyond Meat?

Right now, plant-based milks account for c. 13% of the fluid milk category in the US and there’s no reason that plant-based meat cannot achieve similar market penetration, said Beyond Meat.

“We believe that by applying the same strategy to the plant-based meat category, it can grow to be at least the same proportion of the approximately $270bn meat category in the United States, which over time would represent a category size of $35bn in the United States alone.

Co-founded by Ethan Brown and Brent Taylor in 2009, Beyond Meat​​ launched its first products​​​​ on the national stage in 2013, and has appeal to vegans/vegetarians and meat eaters alike, according to​​​ executive chairman Seth Goldman, who said the majority of Beyond Burger fans were flexitarians​​ - meat eaters cutting down on meat – validating the initially controversial decision to merchandise the product in the meat case.

A strong pipeline of products in development

Beyond Meat recently opened a 30,000 square foot innovation center ​in El Segundo, California, started production at a new manufacturing facility in Columbia, Missouri, and struck deals with several co-manufacturers: “By the end of the first quarter of 2019, we expect to triple our monthly production capacity as compared to the end of the second quarter of 2018.”

The firm also has “a strong pipeline of products in development.”

Beyond Burger in a bun

Ingredients list, Beyond Burger:​​ Water, pea protein isolate, expeller-pressed canola oil, refined coconut oil, contains 2% or less of the following: cellulose from bamboo, methylcellulose, potato starch, natural flavor, maltodextrin, yeast extract, salt, sunflower oil, vegetable glycerin, dried yeast, gum arabic, citrus extract (to protect quality), ascorbic acid (to maintain color), beet juice extract (for color), acetic acid, succinic acid, modified food starch, annatto (for color).

I have long looked forward to the day when my kids can go to a major fast-food chain and order The Beyond Burger. I am grateful to say that day has arrived."

Ethan Brown, founder and CEO, Beyond Meat​  

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1 comment

Cooking Method for New Beyond Meat Burgers

Posted by Marc Plesh,

I am interested in how this pans out because there are those die-hard meatless patty eaters who don't want their meatless patties cooked on or around meat patties. Is Carl's Jr. adding meatless patty grills to the kitchen? Or are they going to throw them all on the same grill, chicken and all? Just wondering if Carl's thought this one out that far.

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