Meat company Tyson has bought a five per cent stake in meat analogue company Beyond Meat.
According to reports, Tyson paid an ‘undisclosed fee’ for the stake.
Tyson describes itself as the world’s largest processor and marketer of chicken, beef, and pork, and it annually exports the largest percentage of beef out of the United States.
Addressing the deal, Beyond Meat founder Ethan Brown said: “My willingness to engage with Tyson may unsettle the most ardent supporters of our brand. Tyson will also likely hear disapproval from certain stakeholders, suppliers, and consumers. Yet in both cases, I like to think that our nascent relationship is a hopeful sign. A sign that we may be moving beyond Oprah v. Cattlemen and toward productive collaboration that expands consumer choice.
I don’t expect to change Tyson. Nor does Tyson expect to change me. Instead, we both intend to serve the changing consumer.
“On my own beliefs, I want to be clear. I believe that plant-based meats have human health … and climate benefit. … These positives issues motivate me, strongly. But I also believe in what is the third rail in polite company: animals value their lives as much as we do ours, and here we have unmet obligations. It would be disingenuous of me to downplay this belief as I entered this new relationship.”
Animal Rights charity Peta added: “Beyond Meat, (Peta’s 2013 Company of the Year,) has tantalized flesh-eaters and vegans alike with its line of delicious cruelty-free meats. Recently, the company began selling its Beyond Burger, which contains a whopping 20 grams of protein, is free of hormones and cholesterol, and actually ‘bleeds’ when you cook it (mind = blown). It’s so convincing that the select Whole Foods stores where the burger is currently available sell it in the meat case. Best of all, no animals are mutilated and slaughtered just for sandwiches.”