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Century Pacific Food launches plant-based meat in Walmart

CANNED food manufacturer Century Pacific Food, Inc. said on Monday that its plant-based luncheon meat brand unMEAT is now available in more than 2,000 Walmart stores in the United States.

“This vote of confidence from Walmart affirms that we are heading in the right direction with respect to our plant-based business,” said Century Pacific Food Chief Operating Officer Gregory H. Banzon.

“We believe in the long-term potential of plant-based alternatives, and brands like ‘unMEAT’ have a role to play to sustainably address the food requirements of an increasingly growing global population,” he added.

The vegan meat alternative brand was first launched in the country in 2020 and was “favorably received both locally and abroad.”

The food manufacturer introduced the brand domestically through Shakey’s Pizza. This was followed by a retail launch across major supermarkets nationwide ahead of a global rollout in 2021.

Aside from luncheon meat, it also launched plant-based dairy alternative unCHEESE in 2021 and seafood alternative unMEAT Fish-free Tuna in 2022.

“We are continuously developing and testing out new ‘unMEAT’ products to expand the range and to provide consumers with more plant-based options. As we work on increasing our reach in key international markets to further grow the brand, we are also looking to develop products that would cater to local tastes,” Mr. Banzon said.

Mr. Banzon noted the possibility of a long-term double-digit growth rate in the plant-based meat market. He said that the company’s business plans were anchored in this kind of market environment.

Aside from Walmart, unMEAT is distributed in the US through HEB, Harris Teeter, Meijer, and selected natural and grocery stores. It can also be purchased on specialty e-commerce sites such as GTFO, It’s Vegan, Weee!, and Vegan Black Market.

“We are continuing to roll out unMEAT worldwide, but the focus would be in these key markets where we have a strong distribution network in place,” the company said in an email.

“Currently, the goal is to get into more doors in these key markets, generate trial and awareness, and execute well. We are also continuing to innovate as part of our business ambition to democratize the category and advocacy to promote a flexitarian lifestyle,” it added.

The product brand is currently rolled out in the United Arab Emirates, the US, China, Australia, and Singapore.

Century Pacific Food is a holding firm with business interests in buying and selling, processing, canning, packaging, and manufacturing food products.

At the stock market on Monday, its shares rose by 0.39% or 10 centavos to close at P25.50 each. — Sheldeen Joy Talavera

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