According to Reuters, Canadian meat-packing company Maple Leaf Foods announced on Tuesday that it would buy U.S.-based vegan protein producer Lightlife Foods.
Maple Leaf, which primarily raises and slaughters pigs, revealed last October that it had dedicated a few staff members to creating plant-based protein products.
Michael McCain, president and CEO of Maple Leaf Foods, said in a press release:
Expanding into the fast growing plant-based proteins market is one of Maple Leaf’s strategic growth platforms and supports our commitment to become a leader in sustainability. Consumers are increasingly looking to diversify their protein consumption, including plant-based options. The acquisition of Lightlife provides Maple Leaf with a leading market position and brand in the United States in a category that is outpacing growth in the broader packaged foods sector.
The U.S. market for plant-based proteins is estimated at $600 million, with the refrigerated category representing more than $110 million and delivering double-digit annual growth. With these profits and growth potential, it should come as no surprise that Maple Leaf isn’t the only meat producer investing in plant-based alternatives.
Earlier this year, Tyson Foods invested in plant-based meat company Beyond Meat. Additionally, the company announced it had launched Tyson New Ventures LLC, a $150 million venture capital fund for investing in vegan meats.
With an estimated 12 percent of millennials identifying as faithful vegetarians, this is truly a wise investment in the future. In 2015, meat consumption in the U.S. fell 15 percent, while vegan protein sales exploded. According to Lux Research, plant-based proteins are expected to make up a third of the protein market by 2054!
Take a stand for animals, the environment, and your health by transitioning to a plant-based diet today.
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