Plant-Based Meat Producers Face Regulation In Expansion To China

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Major plant-based meat producers are facing difficulties as they attempt to penetrate the Chinese market.

The two plant-based meat producers in particular embarking on this endeavor are Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. Both companies have struck large deals with fast food chains in the United States. Now they are setting their sights on China as a potential customer base that will expand the plant-based meat customer base.

However, China enforces strict regulations that could take the companies years to navigate before their products are widely sold throughout the country. This struggle was exemplified by Impossible Foods’ booth location in an obscure corner at the convention center where the International Import Expo was hosted.

Selling plant-based meat in China also has large implications for the environment. Meat production is a major contributor to climate change. China is also the world’s largest consumer of meat. Replacing meat with plant-based meat would lower emissions.

“Every time someone in China eats a piece of meat, a little puff of smoke goes up in the Amazon,” Pat Brown, chief executive of Impossible Foods said. “It is an absolutely essential and extremely important market for us.”

Additionally, China’s supply of pork was recently reduced because of the quick spread of African swine fever. Plant-based meats could provide an opportunity to satisfy pork demand while pork supply is low.

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