Beyond Meat announced that a new version of its meat-free chicken tenders would be available in almost 400 restaurants across the U.S.
These tenders will be available nationwide as the first Beyond chicken substitute in over two years. The company decided to concentrate on its Beyond Burger and ceased making frozen chicken strips as an alternative.
Ethan Brown, CEO of Ethan Brown, stated that the demand for beef products increased to the point that we had to dedicate all of our production capacity. “So we decided not to continue, also motivated by the desire to improve it.”
Beyond has been testing a fried chicken replacement with Yum Brands KFC since then. The participating restaurants are either small chains or independent restaurants.
Brown stated that the chicken tenders have been priced to be easily sold in restaurants. The company’s recipe was designed with scale in mind so that it can continue to lower the price as more tenders become available.
This new meat-free chicken recipe has a mixture of peas and fava beans. It contains 14 grams of protein per portion. Beyond’s sausages and beef have been primarily protein-rich in peas, but the products also contain small amounts of fava beans and other proteins.
Brown stated, “One of my main interests is to continue to increase the protein diversity we have.”
The coronavirus pandemic has ravaged the company’s foodservice sector, which includes sales to restaurants and universities as well as office buildings. Beyond’s U.S. foodservice revenues fell 26% to $16.7 Million in the three months ending April 3. Brown stated that the launch timing coincided with consumers returning to restaurants. However, it was a fortunate coincidence.
Brown stated that Beyond is looking to expand its poultry business and plans to produce more meat substitutes. The company didn’t give any information about when the meat-free chicken tenders will be available in grocery stores. In the United States, more than three-quarters of the company’s revenue was generated through retail channels in its first quarter.
Beyond shares have increased by 12% in the past year to $8.85 billion as of Wednesday’s close.