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Beam Available in The UAE, Grass Protein, Plant-based on Campus and Market Reports

We’ve been tracking the news for the best plant-based stories. From news outlets across the globe and our own industry insiders – here are the most interesting and relevant news stories from the last couple of weeks.   

Veganuary Effect  

Organisers say the annual January challenge broke all records. More than 700,000 officially signed up, from almost every country in the world. In the UK a YouGov survey found that 4% of brits participated, and that overall 9% have participated since the challenge began a decade ago. The growth of Veganuary was food for thought around plant-based investment in a column by Moira O’Neill in the Financial Times.  

Market Reports – predicted growth in plant-based foods 


The vegan egg substitute market is predicted to grow at rate of 39% by 2028, according to a new report from Market Intelligence Data. The study says the increase is driven by concerns about food safety, and that the use of antibiotics and hormones are driving consumers to plant-based substitutes. As a result some food companies are phasing out or reducing the use of eggs in their supply chain and switching to plant-based alternatives.  

Protein Shakes   

Health concerns are also driving the growth of vegan protein shakes. Digital Journal reports that industry analysis found that consumers embracing healthy lifestyle are driving the adoption of vegan shakes.  

Vegan Chocolate 

The vegan chocolate market is set to surpass $1975.2 million, with a growth rate of 15%, by 2028 according to Vantage Market Research. The most popular category is bars, with demand driven by teenagers and employees at work leading the trend in plant-based snacking. Awareness of environmental issues, animal cruelty and health are cited as factors in the trend.  

Research and Development 

Grass Protein 

The rumour that vegans eat grass could become reality, as grass is being trialled as an ingredient in plant-based meat. Food Ingredients First says Schouten Europe and Grassa are researching the potential of grass protein to replace soy in meat substitutes. According to Grassa’s director, grass produces 2.5 times as much protein per hectare as soy and could soon be made into human food.  

UK’s First Cultivated Pork Steak  

UK scientists have produced the world’s first cultivated pork steak. The cut was made from pig cells by Newcastle-based biotech start-up 3D BioTissues. This report is from Food Manufacture.  

Scaling Up  

Cultivated Meat in China  

Green Queen reports on the development of the first cultivated meat plant in mainland China. Start-up CellX and manufacturer Tofflon have agreed a partnership to scale-up cultivated meat in the Asian market with the new factory. Building has already started, and manufacturing is expected to start in mid-2023.  

 Omni Dog Food 

Vegan dog food Omni has reached its crowdfunding target of nearly $500k according to Pet Business World. The company surpassed its goal within 15 minutes of going live on the Seedrs platform, the fasted ever success in the dog food category.   

New School Foods Plant-Based Salmon  

New School Foods has secured $12 million of seed funding to build a pilot plant for its plan-based fish. Food Dive says funders include Lever VC, Hatch, Good Startup and Blue Horizon Ventures. The company is developing realistic plant-based fish fillets using a freezing process instead of extrusion.   

Algae ingredients  

French company Algama, making algae-based ingredients has achieved investments worth $13 million, according to the Fish Site. Their most promising product is Tamalga, designed to be a replacement for eggs in baking.  



Ukranian start-up GreenGo is expanding its tofu-based cheese production despite the ongoing war. Food Ingredients First says the business is planning a new factory close to the Polish border to enable it to ship products to the EU and beyond. The company also makes plant-based seafood and steak from a mixture of pea protein, wheat, and soya.  

Meati Mushroom Factory 

A “MegaRanch” that farms mushrooms instead of cows has opened in the US. Millions of pounds of mycelium-based meat will be produced every year by Colorado-based Meati in the new facility. This from Plant based News 

 Rebellyous Nuggets 

Plant-based nugget brand Rebellyous has raised $9.5 million for a new manufacturing system, according to Food Dive’s reporter Megan Poinski. Rebellyous aims to produce inexpensive convenient comfort food that undercuts chicken on price. Founder, CEO and former Boeing engineer Christie Lagally told Food Dive: “Such a huge majority of consumers will totally replace their chicken if they can just get that price point there,” 

Every Co Egg Alternative 

Plant Based News reports that actor Anne Hathaway is among the investors in plant-based egg. She is putting up an undisclosed amount into the San Francisco-based EVERY Co that uses precision fermentation to create egg protein without chickens. The company has raised $230 million in total.  

Retail and foodservice  

Juicy Marbles in UK supermarket 

Juicy Marbles steaks have gone on sale in UK supermarket Waitrose. The Slovenian-based start-up, founded by microbiologist Luka Sincek, makes ultra-realistic high protein mock-meat that is bought raw and caramelises like animal flesh when cooked. In November 2021 the company raised $4.5 million seed funding to produce the steak.  

Beam Available in The UAE  

Allergen-free plant-based snack bars from Northern Ireland’s Bream brand are now on sale in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The range are available in stores run by Spinneys, Grandiose and Waitrose in the region.  

Plant-Based on Campus 

Vegan restaurants are making their way into university campuses, as students increasingly look for plant-based options. According to Veg News Bryant University in Rhode Island will be home to a branch of Plant City X, and Georgia Tech in Atlanta will be home to a Slutty Vegan at its John Lewis Student Center. Slutty Vegan is reported to have secured $25 million in investments to expand across several states.  

Alice Grahame
Alice Grahame is a freelance writer based in London. She’s worked for the BBC, Guardian and various NGOs. She enjoys walking, allotment gardening and trying new plant-based dishes.