Beyond Meat preps for IPO as rivals take bite out of food industry

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/apr/28/beyond-meat-wall-street-debut-public

Startup is the latest ‘unicorn’, with a valuation of about $1.2bn, to go public as its competitor launches the Impossible Whopper

In 2018, Beyond Meat brought in a net revenue of $88m, and lost $30m.
 In 2018, Beyond Meat brought in a net revenue of $88m, and lost $30m. Photograph: George Whale

Wall Street is going vegan. At some point in the next four weeks, Beyond Meat, a pioneering plant-based meat alternative startup, will debut on Wall Street at a valuation of about $1.2bn. And in the meantime its rivals are cutting deals with some of the biggest names in food.

Beyond Meat is the latest in a series of “unicorns” – private companies valued at over $1bn – to go public. And this one is edible.

The company, based in El Segundo, California, was founded 10 years ago by tech entrepreneur Ethan Brown. It found early backing from legendary Silicon Valley financiers Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers – and later from Bill Gates and Leonardo DiCaprio – before it brought its first product, a chicken-free “chicken”, to market in 2013.

Now the company is going public, at a pivotal moment for meat-like products created from plant-based protein, mainly yellow peas, which are being used to create a new wave of burgers (which actually “bleed” with beet juice), together with poultry and sausage substitutes that taste far closer to the real thing than their predecessors.

The benefits of eating less meat from both ethical, environmental and health standpoints, have never been greater. And the business community has spied the potential for big profits.

Even giant meat companies such as Tyson, the world’s second largest processor of chicken, beef and pork, are backing meat alternative startups. It is investing in cultured meat maker Future Meat Technologies, which grows meat from cells.

Memphis Meats, another company developing cultured meats, boasts the vast Cargill grain company among its investors, alongside Gates, again, and Sir Richard Branson.

Wall Street’s interest doesn’t stem from a new found love of veganism. US meat production totalled 52bn lb in 2017, poultry production totalled 48bn lb. Beef exports alone are worth over $7bn a year.

The goal of Beyond Meat’s Brown is to recreate meat with plant-based inputs. “We don’t want you to walk away from meat, we’re just taking animals out of the equation,” he said in an interview with CBS, citing figures that show 70 million Americans are reducing their intake of meat.

In a letter written by Brown included in Beyond Meat’s IPO prospectus, Brown insists: “We do not face a binary decision to eat or abandon meat.”

He describes livestock as “a bioreactor consuming vegetation and water and using their digestive and muscular system to organize these inputs into what has traditionally been called meat”. Beyond Meat, he says, does the same, without the animal.

So far, Beyond Meat is consuming cash. In 2018, it brought in a net revenue of $88m, and lost $30m. A year earlier, revenues were nearly $33m, and the company made a loss of $30m.

But that could change fast if alternative meat products can take just a small bite out of the $1.4tn global meat market, or mirror the success of non-dairy milk products – which in the US is now 13% of the size of the traditional dairy milk business.

As consumers increasingly turn to plant-based meat alternatives, the only limit for growth maybe the availability of plant-based protein to make products from.

Just five years since the launch of its debut product, Beyond Meat products are now available at 30,000 outlets in the US and overseas, from Whole Foods and TGIF in the US to Tesco and All Bar One in the UK.

According to Dan Altschuler Malek, a venture capital partner at New Crop Capital, an early investor in Beyond Meat, the meat, dairy, egg and seafood sectors are a trillion-dollar market ripe for large-scale disruption.

“We believe the global food system is broken and one of the contributors is animal agriculture which has caused significant damage to the environment,” said Malek. “At some point, the planet will hold 9 billion-plus people, and the reality is there are not enough resources to sustain current levels of protein consumption.”

Beyond Meat, Malek says, is the third generation of plant-based products. The first was for vegans who, for philosophical reasons, sacrificed pleasure for beliefs in refusing animal proteins. The second generation developed products with taste and flavor. In the third generation, companies like Beyond Meat looked to develop products that are good enough on their own to consume without any sense of loss or substitution.

“That’s a seamless transition for the consumer and that’s what the third generation of producers are doing. Manufacturing technology has played a large part. Now we have a convergence that fulfill the promise of great taste and texture for consumers.”

Ultimately, Malek believes, we may begin to detach from the need for plant-based protein to resemble meat products. But now it’s still early days and consumers still want something that they already know.

“You can’t make them jump across two axes, simultaneously, switching ingredients and switching flavor. Eventually we’ll get to a place where products don’t need to resemble chicken or beef or lamb. They will simply be delicious and plant-based.”

And moneyspinning.

‘BOYCOTT JIMMY JOHNS’ TRENDS AFTER CEO’S HUNTING OBSESSION EXPOSED

‘Boycott Jimmy Johns’ Trends After CEO’s Hunting Obsession Exposed

by  | April 27, 2019

There should be no doubt in how fiendish an act hunting can be. Nonetheless, many people find their cup of tea in the ruthless “sport.” Just recently, CEO of Jimmy John’s, Jimmy John Liautaud’s hunting obsession was exposed on Twitter, and a new hashtag has been making its rounds on the internet reading, #BoycottJimmyJohns. Read on to know more about ‘Boycott Jimmy Johns’ hashtag that went viral on Twitter.

Boycott Jimmy Johns
Photo by Loïc Fürhoff on Unsplash

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‘Boycott Jimmy Johns’ Trends After CEO’s Hunting Obsession Exposed

The CEO of the gourmet sandwich chain, Jimmy John Liautaud, has a hunting obsession and the fact is quite well documented. Years back, a website allegedly revealed the CEO’s images with him posing with killed “trophy” animals like a leopard and an elephant.

More recently, Twitter user Yossarian317 posted a macabre image which features the sandwich chain’s CEO posing with two thumbs up, sitting on the corpse of a huge elephant he allegedly hunted and killed. The tweet garnered some 28k re-tweets and 22k likes.

Twitter user Yossarian317 tweeted the post with the caption:

“Owner of Jimmy Johns celebrating the killing of a beautiful animal. Remember next time you want a sub. Please retweet!”

Credit: @yossarian317/ Twitter
‘Boycott Jimmy Johns’ Trends After CEO’s Hunting Obsession Exposed

And within a blink of an eye, twitter outpoured their aghast and anger on the image with comments flooding in. A user wrote:

Credit: @tarastrong/ Twitter

“Despicable, unfathomable, disgusting. The owner of @jimmyjohns. Sorry about your tiny penis, Jim. I’m sure glad there’s lots and lots of other sandwich places.”

Credit: @RobWoodson26/ Twitter

Another user said: “Will never go to Jimmy Johns again!”

Credit: @LeilaniMunter/ Twitter
‘Boycott Jimmy Johns’ Trends After CEO’s Hunting Obsession Exposed

“Do we start a #BoycottJimmyJohns trend??,” added another user.

How Can Killing be Fun?

Hunting as a sport is unfortunately still enjoyed by many. Some hunting instances take place on private enclosed lands where enforcing the law can be difficult. Hunters reportedly pay to kill native and exotic species in what it is called a “canned hunt.” Do you find anything exciting or sporty in succumbing animals to death in enclosed lands where they can’t escape? I don’t.

Animal rights activist groups like PETA are encouraging people to boycott Jimmy Johns, like the trending hashtag, and are referring to sandwich shops like Subway, which does not support trophy hunting. What do you think? Going vegan is surely an all-in-one boycott to every single animal abuse happening on earth. Let me know your views in the comments.

PETA’s Secret Weapon In Fur Ban Fight: A Coyote Trap

The animal-rights group is showing lawmakers how brutal the traps are as the City Council considers a ban on fur sales.

By Noah Manskar, Patch Staff |  | 
NEW YORK — Hooded faces ringed with fur seem to cross every New York City block in the winter months as Canada Goose parkas have grown popular. But the high-end outerwear’s trim comes from coyotes, which often find themselves caught in small but powerful metal traps, animal rights activists say.

As the City Council considers banning fur sales, Dan Mathews, a senior vice president at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, has been snapping pencils with one of those traps to show lawmakers just how brutal the fur trade is.

“Some of the shards of the pencil fly eight feet across the room and they imagine that being an animal’s bone — it puts a visceral face on a talking point,” said Mathews, who has met over the last several weeks with half a dozen Council members, including Speaker Corey Johnson.

The trap is a powerful visual aid in PETA’s quest to make New York the nation’s largest city to ban fur sales, according to Mathews, who is also demonstrating it for fashion designers and model agencies ahead of a May 15 hearing on the Council bill.

PETA is training its activists to show the traps off more widely and producing a video featuring the designer Stella McCartney to educate consumers about them, Mathews said.

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“People have commented that it looks like something out of a medieval torture museum,” Mathews said. “And I think when people realize that there are thousands of these in use today capturing animals — not just coyotes but all sorts of wildlife and family dogs — it becomes a very simple issue.”

The so-called leghold trap Mathews demonstrated for Patch on Thursday snapped in the blink of an eye. Food is used to lure coyotes to the devices, which go for as little as $10 online. But they inadvertently capture other creatures such as dogs, cats, songbirds and owls — which trappers call “trash animals,” Mathews said.

New York State is home to about 10,000 trappers. Leghold traps are used throughout the state, including just north of the city in Westchester County, Mathews said.

State law bans leg-gripping traps with teeth and requires trappers in most parts of the state to visit their traps every 24 hours. But such rules are hard to enforce, as only the trappers generally know where the traps are set, Mathews said.

Mathews expects a tough fight over the proposed fur ban despite Johnson’s support for it. The bill would bar retailers from selling fur apparel and fine those who get caught.

Johnson has argued the measure would help protect animals. But longtime Manhattan furrier Jerry Sorbara, whose store is on West 32nd Street, says it could put him out of business.

“It’s gonna escalate to that you cannot even walk in the street and they come and see what kind of shoes you (are) wearing, and they will kill you if you wear something that is not right,” said Sorbara, 80, who opened his custom fur business in 1975. “I think it’s really insane what they’re doing.”

While Johnson’s bill would let merchants sell used fur items, Sorbara said only “a handful” of people sell used fur coats. The ban could also hurt parts of the fashion industry that make other components of fur garments such as buttons and linings, he said.

Sorbara said he uses furs from farm-raised minks, chinchillas and sables — not trapped animals. He’s even made a miniature mink coat for a customer’s dog.

“You mean to say … that we don’t love animals? Are you kidding me?” Sorbara said.

Beyond Meat Should Be Cheap Enough – If You Believe In The Product

Meat-alternative startup Beyond Meat is going public soon, with a current range of $19-21 per share.

Sales are small, but skyrocketing, and there seems to be a large market opportunity here.

BYND won’t be cheap, with the midpoint of the range suggesting a 10x EV/revenue multiple – and it’s not profitable, either.

But the valuation, while seemingly high, is reasonable enough for investors who trust the product and the category.

I was turned on to Beyond Meat (BYND) – both the stock and the actual product – by a relative recently. Truthfully, neither BYND nor the Beyond Burger fit my usual profile. I’m a happy and common red-meat eater, and my investing tastes lean more strongly toward value plays than growth stocks – and particularly recent IPOs.

But I’m intrigued on both fronts. I tried the Beyond Burger at the Epic Burger restaurant chain in Chicago – and was quite impressed. And as for BYND stock, there’s an interesting growth case here, at least at the midpoint of the planned pricing range of $19-21.

There are risks, to be sure. The stock isn’t cheap, at roughly 10x EV/revenue (on a trailing twelve-month basis). We’ve seen more than a few ‘better for you’ stocks tumble in categories like gluten-free and organic food. Beyond Meat will have plenty of competition. Post-IPO trading is likely to be volatile, to say the least, given the limited financial history and the “garbage in, garbage out” problem of modeling future results.

That said, there’s an intriguing case here at a reasonable price. Beyond Meat has an enormous opportunity, and if it can capitalize, BYND stock could have a similarly enormous upside.

The Beyond Meat Business

Beyond Meat’s business model essentially is to create plant-based meats. The company is developing alternatives for beef, chicken, and pork, but for the time being its Beyond Burger is the real driver here. 70% of gross revenue in 2018, per the S-1/A, came from the Beyond Burger, up from 48% the year before. Yellow peas are the primary protein source for the Burger, Beyond Sausage, and frozen Beyond Beef Crumbles. A newer product, Beyond Beef (a ground beef substitute), uses a blend of peas, rice proteins, and mung (a type of bean).

Animal Rights Activists Occupy Brooklyn Slaughterhouse on Good Friday

APRIL 22, 2019 BY 

 

The News

On Good Friday, 15 animal rights activists occupied a slaughterhouse in Brooklyn in an effort to draw public attention to the lambs who are killed for Easter dinner.  They remained inside until the police arrived 20 minutes later.  While they were unable to rescue any animals, they did capture footage of lambs and goats in their final moments.

“We wanted to appeal to the conscience of the management during the holiday weekend by giving them the chance to spare two lives,” said Jill Carnegie, one of the protest organizers. “Even with the theme of “new life” spanning multiple belief systems, they refused. As a result, we felt compelled to occupy their place of business.”

Animal rights activists ask slaughterhouse owner to show mercy during the Easter holiday by giving them two lambs.

During the Easter holiday weekend, animal rights activists around the world took to social media to address the inconsistency of eating animals during Easter, a holiday that celebrates life. Almost 1,000 people shared words of wisdom posted by vegan spokesperson Ed Winters, also known as Earthling Ed.

“The cultural tradition of butchering lambs for Easter is so brutally contradictory with our cultural fondness of lambs. Lambs are found in so many things related to human children – books, toys, clothes, decor, nursery rhymes and fairytales. We connect them with our own children as they are full of innocence and life.⁣

Sheep have a deep bond with their young, and lambs are known to form very close relationships with their mothers. Sheep, like all maternal parents (human and non-human), get distressed when they can’t find their children. So the sheep whose children are used for lamb ‘production’ suffer huge amounts of grief and turmoil when their babies are taken from them year after year. We eat babies in the name of tradition, and we destroy families in the name of peace. This isn’t in our nature, as we would never take a child to a slaughterhouse to witness how a ‘leg of lamb’ arrived at the family dinner table. ⁣

Easter is a celebration of life, so why must so many suffer and die? Blood does not need to be shed in order for us to celebrate. The foundations of so many of our traditions come from the idea of unity and togetherness, so indeed today and everyday let us live by those values and pledge to not only live in unity with our own species, but all species.⁣”

US vegan food-maker Beyond Meat eyes $1bn valuation

A Beyond Meat burgerImage copyrightBEYOND MEAT

US plant-based meat-maker Beyond Meat is raising money by issuing shares which will value the firm at over $1bn in its stock market debut.

The firm, which made its UK launch in November, expects to offer 8.75 million shares priced between $19 and $21 each.

At the upper price range, the flotation would value the company at $1.2bn.

Beyond Meat says it wants to tap into the growing popularity of veganism and hopes to boost research and development and expand manufacturing facilities.

The company, which is backed by investors including US meat producer Tyson and Microsoft founder Bill gates, expects to receive gross proceeds of about $175m from the offering.

Its valuation makes it a so-called “unicorn firm”.

The term, coined by venture capital investor Aileen Lee, refers to privately owned tech start-ups valued at $1bn (£686m) or higher.

Originally named after the mythical creatures, because they were so rare, the number of such firms has rapidly increased and includes taxi-hailing app Uber, ride-sharing start-up Lyft and online scrapbook company Pinterest.

Beyond Meat’s Beyond Burger was originally due to be introduced into 350 Tesco stores last August, but was delayed by three months because of supply issues.

It has entered a crowded UK market with more suppliers moving into supermarkets, some of whom are producing their own-label vegan foods.

On its website, Beyond Meat says: “Why do you need an animal to create meat? Why can’t you build meat directly from plants? It turns out that you can. So we did.”

Chart showing the number of vegetarians and vegans in Great Britain in 2016.

Veganism is becoming more popular in Great Britain. Research conducted by the Vegan Society in 2016 estimated there were around 540,000 vegans across the country, compared with around 150,000 in 2006.

Supermarket chains in the UK are stocking more vegan options, with Waitrose starting a dedicated vegan section in more than 130 shops last year and Iceland reporting sales of its plant-based foods rising by 10% in a year.

I lectured about the public health dangers of industrial farming. But what I saw went beyond my fears

.. Visiting one was far worse than I imagined

APRIL 20, 2019 6:00PM (UTC)
Excerpted and adapted from “Our Symphony with Animals: On Health, Empathy and Our Shared Destinies” by Aysha Akhtar. Published by Pegasus Books. © Aysha Akhtar. Reprinted with permission.
https://www.salon.com/2019/04/20/i-studied-factory-farms-for-years-visiting-one-was-far-worse-than-i-imagined/?fbclid=IwAR0qzRUvQyipHFsAthJ1yyp_6dvahNy_eu9-yAUpqy_nYjQbcqh1jn4wkoI
I was giving a talk at a conference in Oklahoma about the public health dangers of industrial animal farming, or “factory farming” as it is commonly called. Each year, more than 64 billion animals are raised and killed for food globally. In the United States alone, 1 million animals are slaughtered every hour. Largely because of increased demand for cheap animal products, intensive animal operations have replaced most traditional farming practices world- wide. The transformation of animal agriculture is so dramatic that it has been dubbed the “livestock revolution.” This unprecedented change in the human relationship with animals has led to not only more animal suffering than ever before in human history but also to devastating harms to human health.

At the conference, I presented data showing how animal agriculture (and the resultant high consumption of animal products) causes more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire transportation sector. It also pollutes our land and water and increases our risks of cancers, obesity, strokes, and infectious diseases like salmonella, E. coli, and bird flus. Throughout my presentation, a solemn-looking woman with short, auburn hair and glasses kept shaking her head in disagreement. When I ended my talk and opened the floor for questions, the woman went on the attack. She disputed everything I said. There are no environmental hazards, no infectious disease risks, no animal welfare problems.

“Have you ever visited one of these farms?” she demanded, with evident anger.

I told her I had not because these places are not open for the public’s viewing. But my data came from reputable studies published by institutions like the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. The evidence is so strong, the American Public Health Association called for a moratorium on factory farms.

The woman, Jean Sander, was dean of the Oklahoma State University’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences. “You need to visit our farms,” she replied. “They are nothing like what you say.”

Three months later, I take Jean up on her offer. The farms are worse than anything I’ve read.

On a dismal morning in late November, I meet Dr. Sander at the parking lot of a Sonic fast food restaurant in Bristow, Oklahoma. After we greet each other and complain about the weather, I get into her car. We head out to visit an egg-laying farm about a half hour away. This farm is not the place Jean initially set up for my visit. She was originally going to take me to see a “broiler” farm, where chickens are produced for meat, which is contracted by Tyson Foods. The Tyson chicken facility is one of Oklahoma’s largest.

But a few days before my flight to Tulsa, the Tyson facility manager backed out. He informed Jean that an undercover investigation at a chicken facility in Tennessee recently caught the attention of news reporters. As a result, he was not letting any outsiders in his buildings. The undercover investigators videotaped farm employees beating sick chickens with spiked clubs. Like the Oklahoma facility, the one in Tennessee was also contracted by and supplied chickens to Tyson Foods.

The only reason I am being allowed in is because of Jean. Her affiliation with Oklahoma State University, one of the largest agricultural schools in the country, has placed Jean in a position to know many of the animal farm managers in Oklahoma. They view her as an ally. And thanks to my connection with Jean, they must have seen me as nonthreatening. Even so, it took months for Jean to find facilities that would open their doors to us.

Herbert Wendell walks up to us and shakes our hands with fervor. With his ruddy cheeks and cheerful welcome, he immediately reminds me of my father-in law. Herbert comes from a family of crop farmers and was the first to move into animal agriculture. In 1957, he bought one chicken that started his egg-laying business. Since then, the number of chickens has grown to about thirty thousand.

After a few minutes of greeting, Jean hands me a disposable coverall, pair of booties, and gloves. They are meant to keep us from inadvertently introducing infectious agents into the facility as part of a biocontainment plan—methods that clearly don’t work, given how often bird and swine flu epidemics sweep across industrial farms in the United States. Jean and I cover ourselves. We then follow Herbert and his granddaughter inside the nearest of the two animal sheds and . . . oh my god!

I hide my face so the others don’t see me gag. I’m worried I’ll offend Herbert if I vomit.

With great effort, I swallow the bile pooling at the back of my throat and straighten up. Slowly, my other senses kick in. Touch first. Flies land on my face. I swat ineffectually at my forehead, nose, ears. Next comes sound. Not the individual noises of calls, clucks, and squawks. But a roar. A singular shout.

Jean tells me that the standard of practice used to be to allow 54 square inches per bird in a cage. Now they’re moving to 60 to 65 square inches per bird as an animal welfare gesture. Sixty-five square inches is about two-thirds the dimension of a single sheet of letter-sized paper. A hen is forced to live her entire life in the space of my laptop screen, but this is considered, by the agricultural industry, as progress.

As we walk down the rows, I breathe through my mouth to somewhat ease the stench. The birds scurry and climb on top of one another to hide near the back of the cages. They’re terrified of us. I’m scared too. Scared that they will crush one another, which Herbert tells me, has happened. Up closer, I see raw, red exposed areas on most of the birds, where their feathers rubbed off against the wires entrapping them. I can’t imagine how painful that must be.

Since birds crowded like this commonly go mad and peck one another to death, these birds were debeaked, a practice whereby workers grab baby chicks in one hand and thrust their beaks between hot, steaming blades. Workers cut off anywhere from one-third to two-thirds of chicks’ beaks while they’re fully conscious. The industry calls this “trimming their beaks.” But slicing chickens’ beaks off with a heated blade or a scissor device, as is frequently done, is not like trimming your nails. Birds’ beaks are sensitive, highly innervated and able to feel pain and other sensations. It would be like having your toes cut off without anesthesia. Not only do chickens rely on their beaks for many functions, having their beaks severed causes them immense, acute, and, often, lifelong pain.

As we walk about, Herbert describes how the facility functions. Conveyer belts run along the span of the building, automatically collecting the eggs that fall under the chickens. Trenches alongside the cages hold feed pellets. It’s all mechanized. No human hand need ever touch a bird until the time of her death. This, then, is a chicken’s life. To huddle in a cage cowering on top of another for one and a half years until someone kills you.

Jean reminds me this is a small facility. Average-size farms house 100,000 birds. The largest may contain 200,000. I am so overwhelmed by the smell of filth and fear, I can’t fathom what those larger factories must be like.

Maggots. Hundreds, thousands of maggots squirming about the ground. I jump and lift my legs. Squashed maggots are stuck on the bottom of my bootie-covered sneakers. As I hop on each leg to inspect my feet, I slip.

And down I go.

When I look back at this moment, the image that comes to mind is a scene in the movie Poltergeist (the original, of course), when the earth beneath the haunted family’s house erupts and releases the screaming skeletons and gaping skulls buried beneath. In the downpour of a raging storm, the mother desperately tries to rescue her children trapped inside the house. As she runs into their backyard screaming for help, her foot slips along the edge of a large, muddy pit. She slides into a pool of death.

Vets Refuse to Treat Farm Sanctuary Animals Because They Disagree With Their Stance Against Animal Agriculture

Lead Image Source : Spring Farm Sanctuary

Impossible Foods Lands Another Restaurant Chain Partner

Red Robin has bought into the vegan burger craze. The casual dining chain, known for its menu featuring dozens of gourmet burger iterations, has partnered with Impossible Foods to launch the Impossible Cheeseburger, its first foray into plant-based protein burgers. The new menu item will be available across all of Red Robin’s 570 locations in the U.S. starting on April 1.

The deal with Red Robin marks the largest restaurant chain partnership that Impossible Foods has locked in to date. The company also signed on to produce its signature plant-based protein for all 377 White Castle locations in the U.S. last fall.

“Red Robin takes meat seriously — and it’s a major endorsement that the Impossible Cheeseburger is now part of Red Robin’s justifiably famous menu,” Lisa Will, Impossible Foods’ vice president of sales, said in a statement.

A WELCOME SALES BOOST

From Red Robin’s perspective, the chain could use the attention that a popular new menu item launch could bring. Red Robin has been struggling to pull its sales up for multiple quarters, feeling the pressure from operational inefficiencies and being slow to adapt to new digital sales channels, including online ordering and delivery.

In the fourth quarter of 2018, Red Robin reported a 4.5 percent decline in comparable store sales and a 4.4 percent decline in comparable guest count at its restaurants, compared to the same period in the prior year. Total revenue was down 10.8 percent in the quarter.

“2018 was, in sum, a very disappointing year for us,” Red Robin CEO Denny Marie Post told investors on the company’s most recent earnings call. “It brought a lot of hard-earned learning, which we are using to urgently set new plans to turn our performance around.”

A SUCCESSFUL NEW RECIPE

Impossible Foods debuted Impossible Burger 2.0, a revamped version of the original faux meat burger, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this year. The new recipe was cited as the reason that Red Robin’s culinary team chose to work with Impossible Foods to develop a vegan burger offering.

The Impossible Burger is now on the menu at over 5,000 restaurant locations in the U.S., due in part to a distribution partnership with DOT Foods. Impossible Foods is planning to launch a packaged version of the burger in grocery stores later this year.

The company has also hit its fair share of obstacles as it has grown. Impossible Foods announced its first voluntary recall last week over a piece of plastic found in a shipment of its Impossible Burger mix, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has repeatedly investigated the faux meat company over its central recipe ingredient, the “heme” compound.

The suspicious attention has been enough to turn some restaurant chains to Impossible Foods’ direct competitor, Beyond Meat. The plant-based protein purveyor has signed large restaurant chains including Carl’s Jr. and A&W as its partners, already has a grocery distribution deal in place, and has put its Beyond Burger on the menu at upwards of 11,000 restaurants in the U.S. due to an exclusive distribution deal with foodservice giant Sysco. Beyond Meat filed to go public late last year.

Why I’m Still Vegan and Wish You Were Too

 

As people are deciding daily, there are countless good reasons to go vegan, but the core motive for me hasn’t changed since I finally saw the light 20+ years ago. I don’t eat animals because of the mindless atrocities and injustices that so many millions and billions of non-humans are subjected to each and every day of the year.

It’s true, going vegan is healthier for us and the planet, and we wouldn’t be in this runaway climate change predicament if humans weren’t such a successful, over-crowded carnivore. But even as things seem dire for the future of humans’ survival, thoughts of eating the flesh of others is as repugnant and repulsive as ever for this thinking, feeling human being.

It may not save the planet or end all suffering if I bow out of hedonistic carnivism, but it makes my conscience that much clearer each time my hunger is assuaged without resorting to causing unnecessary suffering.

Hope of saving the planet aside, part of the reason I wish our species would wake up from their self-inflicted universal nightmare and decide to stop killing and eating animals is simply the respect I could have for my fellow humans if they could collectively realize there was no future in this race to prove we are the worst blight the Earth has ever seen. No plague of locusts or termites has ever been so destructive as to cause their own ultimate demise; and no team of Tyrannosaurus could ever match runaway humans’ impact on all other life.

Whether we want to keep living or just be able to live with ourselves, it’s time for humans to lay down their arms and proclaim their love for Mother Earth and all her inhabitants. The time for proving we can be the worst tyrant is over—now we should try to prove we deserve to live yet another glorious day.

To be brutally honest with you, I don’t really care what you do to yourselves. That’s not the point. On my skis is a sticker modeled after an anti-smoking slogan that reads: “Go Vegan or Die.” It’s not so much of a warning to spoil your fun as a plea for the sake of others…