Beyond Meat enters prepared meal delivery with Trifecta partnership
Beyond Meat is partnering with California-based Trifecta organic meal delivery service to bring the Beyond Burger and other plant-based products to its fully cooked meals and à la carte items delivered to consumers nationwide.
Trifecta noted Beyond Meat products do not contain soy, gluten or GMOs and therefore will complement its meal plans for those on ketogenic, vegan, vegetarian and paleo diets. They also will "further fulfill the rising demand of consumers" eating more plant-based proteins and those who want convenient and healthy meals delivered to them, the company said.
"[W]e did not have a high-protein, low-carb, low-saturated fat option for our plant-based product lines, so Beyond Meat was a perfect fit for us," Greg Connolly, CEO of Trifecta, said in a release. "This partnership combines the future of food products with the future of food service."
While Beyond Meat's popular plant-based products have been available in grocery stores starting with Whole Foods in 2016, Trifecta said this is the first time they have been available as ready-to-eat items delivered directly to consumers in all 50 states by a prepared meal service.
It's easy to see how this partnership will benefit Beyond Meat, especially since it filed for an IPO last fall. The agreement with Trifecta could bring in a significant number of new customers — and they may later seek out the company's plant-based offerings in retail outlets if they like how the fully cooked products taste and want to prepare their own.
This potential new audience could be large since Beyond Meat doesn't actively market to vegans and vegetarians — who only comprise about 5% and 3% of the U.S. population, respectively, according to a 2018 Gallup poll. Instead, the company is targeting the many consumers who are "flexitarians" and like to eat meat yet also like to switch up their protein sources with plant-based substitutes.
The partnership also could help Trifecta for some of the same reasons, although Beyond Meat's products aren't currently organic. However, the company says on its website that it hopes to gain organic certification in the future, which could help to boost its profile with the growing number of consumers who prefer that option. Beyond Meat does have Non-GMO Project-vertified status for its products and says they are also vegan and free from gluten, antibiotics and hormones.
The arrangement with Trifecta may assist with differentiating Beyond Meat in the crowded plant-based meat alternative market. Trifecta has been around since 2015 and claims to be the largest organic prepared food delivery service in the country, cooking and shipping millions of fully cooked meals annually.
Beyond Meat has already brought to market a plant-based ground beef option, plus sausages, chicken products and frozen beef-like crumbles. It's likely additional innovations will appear in the near future. With the pressure to perform, attract more investment and bolster sales, especially if it eventually goes public, the company will be looking for new markets and more opportunities for growth.
Having its products delivered by Trifecta could help Beyond Meat's position in all these ways — and, depending on how well the partnership pans out — it may also lead to other meal kit companies knocking on the company's door. While the product is now carried by virtually all major retailers such as Kroger, Safeway and Wegmans in the meat section next to their traditional beef products, Trifecta gives Beyond Meat another way to expand its growing reach with consumer demanding more plants in their diets.