Chicken substitute 'Beyond Meat' selling like hotcakes
Washington, June 15 (ANI): In San Francisco, where so many food trends start, a new meat-substitute called "Beyond Meat", is flying out the door.
At Whole Foods in the Haight-Ashbury, a week's supply of the fake chicken sold out in two days, and other Whole Foods in the city are reporting the same phenomenon.
"We're a little taken aback," ABC News quoted the chain's Northern California coordinator for prepared foods, Mathew Mestemacher, as saying.
"The response is overwhelming," he said.
In Los Angeles, Ashley Wilson calls the fake fowl amazing.
The 27-year old video editor said that she has been eating vegan for three years and knows every meat substitute on the market.
"I've eaten a lot of fake meats, and you can always taste the science," she said.
She said that this new one is different.
"It's clean; there's no weird, processed taste," she said.
The texture, too, is correct - pulled apart, it's stringy like chicken. She intends to recommend it to her meat-eating friends.
Ethan Brown, founder the company that makes the pseudo-chicken said his technology can fabricate beef or pork or fish.
"Chicken just happened to be our first product," Brown said.
He hopes his chicken will be the breakout product in a sleepy niche-meat alternative. The 340-million-dollar market, according to research firm Mintel, is growing at 3 percent and 5 percent a year.
"Chicken substitute 'Beyond Meat' is made by putting vegetable proteins through an extrusion process," he said.
Brown is gunning for meat-lovers who want a healthier alternative. His "chicken" has no animal fat, no steroids, no hormones, no antibiotics. It's gluten-free. All it has is vegetable protein.
A mixture consisting of mostly soy and pea powder, carrot fibre and gluten-free flour is subjected to heat, cold and pressure, then extruded into strips.
The process, Brown said, "takes plant proteins and re-aligns them to mimic the appearance and the mouth-feel of animal proteins."
Two professors at the University of Missouri worked on it for 10 years. Brown has an exclusive license.
Whole Foods is still fiddling with price, but for now is selling chicken salads made with Beyond Meat at 12-14 dollars a pound. In coming weeks, they intend to sell the product on its own, like chicken breasts, probably priced the same as chicken. (ANI)
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