Meat, meet plants: Kitchener-Waterloo company asks meat eaters to “meat us half way”
By Food in Canada staffFood Trends Products Meat &Poultry Specialty Foods
Consumers want to eat less meat, and plant-based protein products are on the rise in popularity. Kitchener-Waterloo company, Equilibrium Foods Inc, is the newest innovator in the emerging market of better-for-you burgers with its new, Better Blends™ meat + plant burger. Created to meet the meat eater “half way”, the new blended burger is for consumers who want to eat healthier and be more mindful of the planet, but don’t want to compromise on taste, texture or flavour.
Better Blends meat + plant burgers (50 per cent meat + 50 per cent plants) have less fat, calories and cholesterol per serving than a traditional burger while still packing a protein punch, plus fibre. They are made from real, whole food ingredients: beef raised without antibiotics, Portobello mushrooms, quinoa and lentils, and non-GMO vegetables. They don’t contain any fillers and they are free from the top 10 food allergens including dairy, soy and gluten.
“Many plant-based meat alternatives are highly processed, full of salt and refined ingredients,” says company founder and CEO, Doug Ridge. “Better Blends meat + plant burgers help consumers reduce their consumption of meat by half, and still enjoy what they most love about meat burgers.”
Making space for new meat + plant burgers.
For years, frozen beef burgers have dominated the frozen food section, whereas plant-based alternatives to meat products have been placed in the specialty section of retailers, such as the organic section or healthy aisles. Customers seeking “healthier for you” options must venture into these areas.
“We see the rise of the flexitarian and blended products as an opportunity for Better Blends products,” adds Ridge. “We’re challenging retailers to transform the frozen burger aisle by adding our new, healthier-for-you products that will appeal to mindful meat eaters.”
The company spent more than two years developing the product in an effort to provide healthier options that encourage consumers to eat more plants and reduce meat consumption. Studies indicate that the majority of meat eaters simply want to reduce how much meat they eat, not necessarily become vegans or vegetarians. In fact, one study found that over half of Canadians are willing to reduce their meat consumption.
Burgers continue to be consumed widely in Canada, with nearly half (46 per cent) eating burgers at least once per week (in home and out of home).
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