Food brand THIS™, the maker of hyper-realistic plant-based food for meat lovers, sold 4.5m portions of vegan bacon in the past year.
Whilst most companies are focused on beef/burger alternatives, THIS™ plans to take a bite of the global plant-based meat market expected to be worth $12.41 billion in 2020 with its chicken and bacon alternatives.
The news comes as the realistic plant-based meat company continues to cross boundaries. THIS™ recently became the first vegan meat to feature on a UK Michelin star restaurant menu, The Harwood Arms, and attracted investment from international footballer, Chris Smalling, when the brand raised £4m in a crowd-funded Seedrs campaign. To accelerate growth, THIS™ also plans to invest £1m into a plant-based innovation centre.
This week the company announced it would participate in Tesco’s new cohort of startups Incubator. The brand will benefit from a full year of support and expertise from product and marketing experts.
Andy Shovel, Co-founder of THIS, says:"Being included on the Tesco Incubator Programme is a gigantic honour for us. With alumni like Fevertree, Brewdog and Graze, we can’t help but feel excited by what opportunities it could bring our way.
"Being on the programme will unlock ‘one to one’ support from across the Tesco team, designed to help us realise the full potential of being listed with Tesco. There is no university course that teaches FMCG teams how to make the most of working with retailers, so we’re incredibly grateful that Tesco have offered this leg-up and insight into their operation.
"Plant-based brands massively over-index on this year’s list of Incubator Programme entrants. That can only add further validation, around how much of a seismic shift we’re experiencing in consumer habits."