Investors Get into Fake Seafood
Name a food that you can’t make out of plants these days. Diners of an ethical conscience are meticulous about what goes in their mouths but can enjoy fake burgers, milk, and chicken nuggets. Now, thanks to a mammoth investor, they can add shrimp to their diets!
Remember when shares of Beyond Meat went wacky a few months ago? Tyson Foods, a juggernaut of global food processing, had bet big on the company and was able to cash in at the peak of that rally. Now, vegans may soon be able to diversify their palettes as the company reshuffles its portfolio of food alternative start-ups. This time, plant-based seafood is on the menu. Without harming a single shellfish, New Wave Foods claims it can offer you a shrimp dish so genuine that you couldn’t tell it apart from the real thing.
Tyson enjoys a bit of venture capital on the side, which is why it now owns a bitesize chunk of New Wave Foods. The company’s unusual recipe for shrimp includes soy protein, “natural flavors,” and even seaweed. Its meteoric rise in only three years speaks volumes about the fake food fever in the markets right now. These are hugely exciting, but unchartered waters for investors, and it’s a whole new kettle-of-fish for Tyson Foods to put its money behind as well.
Fear of the unknown took shares in Tyson Foods slightly lower yesterday. Its shareholders are used to a mature, non-volatile stock that rides a basic life need. Food processors need to keep costs low, which could be why investors are questioning the value of what Tyson Foods has just added to its shopping basket! Those questions will linger, too. Debates over the actual health benefits of a plant-based diet rage on, and on, and on. A fad or the future?