Beyond Meat opens JD.com store, as Chinese remain wary of meat substitutes
via The Mighty 790 KFGO - Jul 14, 2021
Fargo, ND, USA / BEIJING (Reuters) – Beyond Meat said on Thursday it has launched an online store in China on ecommerce company JD.com, as the plant-based meatmaker aims to boost sales in the world’s biggest meat market where consumer interest in meat alternatives is low.
U.S.-based Beyond Meat said the JD.com store will initially help expand availability of its products in four major cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, and eventually in 300 cities across China.
Its products are currently mainly available in China through its partnerships with Starbucks Corp, Yum China Holdings Inc and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd’s Freshippo markets.
But expanding into the retail segment by selling on JD.com will help it reach a wider audience in the country, which is increasingly purchasing fresh food online.
Online sales in China of fresh food, into which category Beyond Meat’s products fall, are expected to top 300 billion yuan ($46.40 billion) this year, an increase of 18% from 2020, according to consultancy iiMedia Research.
Beyond Meat’s direct retail foray follows a similar move by Nestle in December, which launched a range of plant-based burgers, sausages, nuggets and dishes suited to Chinese cooking.
The push by global firms comes even as consumers in China are not exactly devouring plant-based meat.
“Currently it is a solo dance by the manufacturers, the consumers are not joining the tango,” said Zhu Danpeng, an independent food industry analyst...