MRM Plant-Based: by CHLOE in Canada and Hardee’s Goes Beyond

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Plant Based World Comes to the UK in 2020

Following the  success of the Plant Based World Conference & Expo in New York, organizer JD Events is delighted to announce the launch of Plant Based World Europe in London in 2020. 

The event, which will combine a world-class conference, with an international exhibition, high-level networking and tasting opportunities, will take place October 16 and 17, 2020 at London's Business Design Centre.

The UK is Europe’s largest market for plant-based foods, valued at £470m versus $4.5 bn in the US, and is growing at an exponential rate. Adoption of a plant-based lifestyle is sweeping the globe as people everywhere are becoming aware of the human health, environmental and ethical implications of consuming more plant-based products. One in six food products launched in the UK in 2018 carried a vegan claim.

“The fundamental shift away from animal product consumption towards more wholesome, plant-based options is our opportunity as a society to create a healthier world for future generations”, commented Ben Davis, Content & Communications Director, Plant Based World Conference & Expo. “Our goal at PBW is to accelerate this shift by providing a professional platform for the global plant-based market to blossom. This message resonated deeply with our inaugural audience in New York and we look forward to bringing the ultimate plant-based experience to London in 2020.”

Plant Based World Europe will be the only European B2B focused event to bring together plant-based product producers and manufacturers, with retailers, distributors, food service providers, restauranteurs, entrepreneurs, investors and healthcare professionals. The event will feature “Community Day” on Day 2, which will provide access to the general public alongside the industry audiences.

The conference will cater to three key audience groups;

  • Business Professionals – Including retailers, restauranteurs, institutional foodservice operators, distributors, investors and brands focused on accelerating the adoption and expansion of plant-based products and options onto store shelves and restaurant menus
  • Healthcare Professionals – Including physicians, clinicians, nurses, nutritionists, health and wellness coaches, focused on the nutritional benefits of a plant-based diet for the reversal and prevention of chronic diseases and for optimal human performance
  • Community – an educational forum for the general public on the many reasons for and benefits of living a plant-based lifestyle

The Exhibition will showcase hundreds of the latest innovations in plant-based living for the industry to review, taste and trial.

Founding Partners include The Vegan Society, Follow Your Heart, PB&Co, Jennifer Pardoe of PB&Co.  and Plant Based News

by CHLOE Expands into Canada

by CHLOE. debuts in Canada with its first location now open at Yorkdale Shopping Centre (3401 Dufferin Street). This marks by CHLOE.'s 18th location since opening in New York's West Village in July 2015.

by CHLOE.'s Founder + Creative Director, Samantha Wasser, said, "We couldn't be more excited to expand our brand into Canada. Toronto's vibrant and diverse community paired with their innovative food scene makes for the perfect destination for our first location in Canada. by CHLOE. was created to make plant-based food more approachable, accessible, and FUN and we're looking forward to getting to know our local customers!"

by CHLOE.'s CEO, Patrik Hellstrand added, "We're very excited to bring by CHLOE. to Canada. As the third largest city in North America, Toronto was a natural next destination for us – the entertainment, dining, and social scene has evolved immensely over the last decade, and the city is now seen as a trailblazer in the food industry. With the already well-established plant-based movement in the city, we are aiming to complement it and become a key part of every Torontonian's lifestyle."

As the first Canadian location, by CHLOE. introduces an exclusive "Toronto by CHLOE." menu that takes inspiration from classic Canadian dishes and local ingredients. The "Toronto by CHLOE." menu includes a Maple Bacon Cheezeburger, Poutine and Split Pea Soup alongside by CHLOE.'s best sellers like The Guac Burger, Quinoa Taco Salad and Pesto Meatball Sub.

by CHLOE. Yorkdale is designed as a nod to the brand's first flagship in NYC's iconic West Village, on the corner of Bleecker and MacDougal Street. The interior design showcases by CHLOE.'s unique style such as colorful striped banquettes and tiled tabletops along with Toronto-inspired neon and signage, swing chairs and eclectic bathroom wallpapers. The U.S. import is also set to open its second Canadian location in downtown Toronto in fall 2020. 

Hardee's Goes Beyond

Hardee’s® will be partnering with Beyond Meat® as one of the first U.S. quick service restaurants to offer plant-based breakfast, lunch and dinner options, top photo.  Hardee’s will be testing a new Beyond Breakfast Sausage™Biscuit and an Original Beyond Thickburger® for a limited-time in two regional markets – Raleigh, NC and Kansas City, MO.

CKE, the parent company of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr., was an early entrant into the plant-based space. In December 2018, Carl’s Jr. became one of Beyond Meat’s largest U.S. plant-based, quick service partners with the launch of the Beyond Famous Star. With more than 4.5 million Beyond Famous Stars sold to-date, Hardee’s has taken key insights from the Carl’s Jr. launch and applied them to the test at Hardee’s restaurants, including testing breakfast, lunch and dinner.

“Core to our brand DNA, at Hardee’s we’re always looking to offer new and innovative menu items that bring our customers the hand-crafted quality they know and love. The new test of Beyond Meat products for the Hardee’s menu is bringing today’s consumers the innovation they crave, morning, noon and night,” said Jenna Folk, Sr. Director of Brand Marketing, Hardee’s. “We’re kicking off the plant-based test in two markets with a strong college presence – we know college campuses specifically are helping to drive bold new conversations and lead culinary trends of the future, like the flexitarian diet. Knowing Beyond Meat is the market leader in the category, and with the tremendous success we’ve had at Carl’s Jr., we’re thrilled to expand the partnership in select Hardee’s restaurants.”

Hardee’s is pairing  Beyond Meat offerings with the restaurants' Made From Scratch Biscuits for breakfast and the signature Charbroil cooking-style for its burgers. The Original Beyond Thickburger® includes a Beyond Burger™ patty, Charbroiled in Hardee’s signature style, and topped with lettuce, tomato, red onion, dill pickles, ketchup, mustard and mayo on a toasted premium bun. The Beyond Breakfast Sausage Biscuit includes a Beyond Breakfast Sausage™ patty on Hardee’s Made From Scratch Biscuits, and both can be customized when ordering.

“Hardee’s has a strong heritage across the Southeast and their desire to offer the Beyond Burger and Beyond Breakfast Sausage reflects an important shift in the demand for plant-based meat,” said Ethan Brown, CEO and Founder, Beyond Meat. “We’re excited to make plant-based options accessible in more and more communities as we move toward a better-for-you, more sustainable future.”

Both the Original Beyond Thickburger®, starting at $5.99, and the Beyond Breakfast Sausage™ Biscuit, starting at $2.99, will be available in participating Hardee’s restaurants in Raleigh, NC and Kansas City, MO.

 I Heart Mac & Cheese Adds Plant-Based Options

 I Heart Mac & Cheese added new plant-based menu items, ensuring its offerings cater to varying ages, lifestyles and cravings. Available nationwide, the company’s menu now features Beyond Meat’s Beyond Burger™, Beyond Beef® Crumbles and Beyond Sausage®.


“Americans are interested in maintaining a healthy and environmentally conscious lifestyle now more than ever, but it can be difficult when these options aren’t readily accessible,” said Steve Giordanella, CEO and Chairman of I Heart Mac & Cheese. “Our vision for this concept was to create options for every member of our local communities, and we found the perfect partner with Beyond Meat to really round out our offerings.”

Through its partnership with Beyond Meat, I Heart Mac & Cheese now offers guests three new proteins to choose from, as they customize their lunch or dinner: 

●        Beyond Burger, a plant-based burger designed to look, cook, and satisfy like beef without GMOs, soy, or gluten. The Beyond Burger is the perfect combination with any grilled cheese sandwich. 

●        Beyond Beef Crumbles, packed with 13g of plant-based protein per serving and made without GMOs, soy, or gluten. The Beyond Beef Crumbles can be added to any bowl.

●        Beyond Sausage is designed to look, sizzle, and satisfy like pork, while offering the benefits of plant-based protein. It’s another delicious, 100% plant-based option to add to your meal.

Known for its seemingly limitless mac and cheese flavor combinations, I Heart Mac & Cheese already features health-conscious options including quinoa, broccoli, cauliflower, and gluten-free pasta. The brand also recently introduced a non-dairy cheese substitute. The creamy sauce is made in-house with a coconut milk base and secret spice blend.

Minit Eliminates Beef, Replaces it With Impossible Burger

Hawaiian convenience store, Minit Stop will eliminate beef from its menu — replacing it entirely with Impossible Burger. The flagship product from Impossible Foods requires vastly less land, water and energy than a conventional burger from cows. The award-winning burger rivals ground beef from cows for taste, nutrition and versatility.


“We’re seeing more and more residents and visitors opt for Impossible. Impossible’s plant-based burger acts, smells, and tastes like beef. So much so, that we can add our own local flavor profile to it. We included ingredients from some of Hawaii’s favorite traditional recipes and created a winning combination unique to Minit Stop,” said Minit Stop Vice President, Jon Miyabuchi. “Our customers have been asking for the Impossible Burger by name almost since it debuted in 2016. We’re thrilled to give consumers exactly what they want, exactly what our planet needs, and with a local flavor profile twist.”

Hawaii restaurants are among the nation’s highest-volume outlets for Impossible Burger sales, with some restaurants selling more than 100 plant-based patties per day. Minit Stop anticipates unprecedented sales volume of the Impossible Burger, which just last month debuted on grocery store shelves and immediately rocketed to the No. 1 position among all packaged goods sold at some of America’s favorite grocery stores.

Minit Stop, a Hawaiian institution, has 18 stores throughout Hawaii and Maui islands where people can refuel their cars and their stomachs. Two of their locations are fuel kiosks. The company embraces the concept of “pono” — to do what is right, including for people and the planet. Minit Stop estimates that it will serve up to 6,875 pounds of Impossible meat per month, and up to 82,500 pounds for the first year. That’s the equivalent to removing 200 cars from the road for a year, preserving a land area of more than 400 football fields large, and saving enough water to fill 55 million standard-size water bottles.

Each of Minit Stop’s 16 store locations offers an island menu of “home-cooked” entrees and is most famous for their Minit Stop Fried Chicken, along with a wide variety of fresh salads and sandwiches daily. The hometown favorite will also be showcasing a variety of its Impossible menu items at A Taste of Hilo on Sunday October 20.

Minit Stop will offer nine different Impossible meal combinations, ranging from $7.49 to $12.99. The initial Impossible menu includes:

  • Impossible™ Sandwiches in regular and Teri burger flavors (debuting later this year)
  • Impossible™ Burger Bowls in Meatloaf, Teri Burger, and Hamburger Steak styles
  • Impossible™ Burger Cheeseburger Flying Saucers — a Minit Stop signature item (debuting later this year)
  • Impossible™ Burger Plate Lunches in Meatloaf, Teri Burger, and Hamburger Steak styles

Investing in Foraging

The San Francisco-based Forager Project, which produces and markets organic, plant-based food and beverages,  received a minority investment from Danone Manifesto Ventures, to continue to build its portfolio of  products, enhance sustainable sourcing and production, increase brand awareness and widen distribution.

“John Charles and I have spent three years getting to know Jean Francois, Laurent and the Danone Manifesto Ventures team. It’s the right time and they are the right partner – good people with leverageable, relevant experience and capital,” said Stephen Williamson, Forager Project Founder & CEO.

Forager Project is a family-owned and operated organic food company that has been crafting plant-based foods in California since 2013. The company has developed a broad portfolio of organic plant-based products including Yogurt, Milk, Sour Cream, Half & Half as well as a range of Protein and Probiotic Shakes. Forager Project believes that the food we eat should be aligned with nature. The purpose of Forager Project is to improve our planet and human health by making exceptional tasting, organic, plant-based whole foods more widely available.

Danone Manifesto Ventures believes Forager Project is a unique brand with strong potential in the fast-growing plant-based space. Forager Project is fully aligned with Danone’s ambition to continue developing a best-in-class platform to meet the increasing needs of plant-based consumers globally.

“Forager Project and Danone have highly aligned values focused on improving human and planet health through food, and a shared commitment to sustainable, enduring business growth,” said Laurent Marcel, CEO of Danone Manifesto Ventures. “Over the years we had the chance to develop a special relationship with Stephen and his talented team, and today we’re very excited to start this partnership with Forager Project.” added Jean-Francois Hurel, Chief Investment Officer for Danone Manifesto Ventures.

Danone Manifesto Ventures launched in 2016 with the mission to support innovative and healthy food and beverage companies, and partners with disruptive entrepreneurs that share its vision of a healthy and sustainable future. Through this unit, Danone makes investments and provides financial and operational support to its portfolio companies through access to its experienced teams around the world. Danone Manifesto Ventures has invested in various companies including Harmless Harvest, Farmer’s Fridge and Sustainable Bioproducts in the US, Michel et Augustin and Yooji in France, as well as Epigamia in India. It was certified as a B Corp in 2018.

Lightlife at Dave & Buster's 

Greenleaf Foods, SPC's Lightlife Burger is now available at all Dave & Buster’s restaurants across the U.S and Canada. The plant-based burger is featured as part of Dave & Buster’s core menu within the “Flame-Grilled Burgers” section.


Lightlife Burgers will be available with a choice of toppings—including lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles and garlic aioli. The Lightlife Burger has 20 grams of pea protein with 0 grams of cholesterol and only 2.5 grams of saturated fat. Created with culinary expertise and balanced nutrition, the Lightlife Burger is the hero of a new plant-based meat line that’s free of GMOs, gluten, soy and artificial flavors.

“Dave & Buster’s has been a pioneer in providing high-quality food and entertainment to customers of all ages for decades,” said Dan Curtin, President and CEO of Greenleaf Foods, SPC. “As we continue our commitment to offering delicious plant-based options for those dining out, we’re excited to partner with such an iconic, beloved American brand.”

The Lightlife® Burger will replace Impossible Burger on Dave & Busters’ menu. “We’ve upgraded to Lightlife to keep up with the demand for plant-based foods,” says Dave & Buster’s Art Carl, VP of Culinary & Beverage. “We strive to be our customers’ first choice for fun, crave-able food, and Lightlife helps us do just that by giving our guests an innovative and incredibly delicious plant-based burger.”

Greenleaf Foods, SPC also noted that Lightlife’s new plant-based meat line will be available in more than 12,000 retail stores. The new products have begun hitting shelves at Kroger, Publix and Target nationwide. Since launching its new plant-based meat line earlier this year, Lightlife's brand sales have doubled versus last year at retailers who started carrying the Fresh Line products earlier this summer. Now with new expansion into Target, Kroger and Publix, Lightlife is doubling its current distribution of the new line, which includes its Burger, Ground, Italian Sausage and Bratwurst Sausage products.


“Lightlife has four decades of history in plant-based foods. We’re thrilled to take our years of expertise and innovation to more shoppers across America by expanding Lightlife into retail stores like Kroger, Target and Publix,” said Dan Curtin, President and CEO of Greenleaf Foods, SPC. “Lightlife fans have been vocal on our social channels, asking for the new products in more grocery stores locally. We are committed to fulfilling demand and providing customers high-quality plant-based products.”

Lightlife’s new plant-based meat line delivers the sensory experience consumers crave from traditional meat but are made of plants, without GMOs, gluten, soy and artificial flavors. The products’ versatility makes them ideal during all seasons, whether it’s football fans grilling the Lightlife Burger for Fall tailgates or it’s families using Lightlife Ground for holiday recipes. As a result, the new products are experiencing increased demand heading into the end of the year. The Lightlife Plant-Based Burger, Ground, Italian Sausage and Bratwurst Sausage can also be found in other retail stores across the U.S., including Acme, Albertsons, Fresh Thyme, Haggen, Jewel, Pavilions, Safeway, Sprouts, Stop & Shop, Vons, Wegmans, and many more. For more information on Lightlife, visit and follow

New Faces at Meatless Farm

The Meatless Farm Co, the plant-based food company known for its meat-free burgers, ground and sausage products, named Lone Thomsen as new Global Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and Mark Cook as VP of Sales, North America. Thomsen and Cook will be instrumental to the plant-based company’s international expansion, with an emphasis on its continued foray into the North American market. 

The executive team expansion closely follows Meatless Farm’s August 2019 launch into more than 450 Whole Foods Market stores in the U.S. The UK-based company has also recently established its U.S. headquarters in New York City, and plans to open production and distribution facilities stateside in support of its North American expansion in 2020.

Thomsen previously served as Head of Media and Communications for The Coca-Cola Company, where she was integral to launching a number of emerging products to the Western European market, including Coca-Cola Energy, Fuze®, Honest Tea and Coca-Cola Signature Mixers. Now, she aims to make The Meatless Farm Co. a household name, globally, with a specific focus on leveraging Meatless Farm’s role as a challenger brand in the U.S. market. Thomsen served as a strategic advisor to Meatless Farm before joining as a full-time executive.

Cook is Meatless Farm’s second hire in North America, filling one of the company’s core leadership roles. He will be critical to the company’s ability to gain market share, not only in North America, but in the global plant-based protein market, which is expected to reach $5 billion by 2020. Cook joins Meatless Farm after serving as VP of Sales for National Sales Associates, a national broker specializing in natural, organic, and specialty products. Throughout his career, Cook has driven the growth of many top U.S. brands and successfully launched brands from Europe and Asia into the U.S. market and grown them into market leaders.

“It’s a pivotal time for Meatless Farm in North America. Not only is there a growing consumer appetite for and awareness of plant-based meat alternatives; our launch with Whole Foods Markets in the U.S. has created demand from the retail and restaurant trade as well,” said Kasper Vesth, General Manager, North America at The Meatless Farm Co. “We’re looking forward to building on the current momentum with Lone and Mark at the forefront.”

Thomsen is based in London, England and will report directly to Meatless Farm CEO Morten Toft Bech. Cook is based in New York and reports to Kasper Vesth, General Manager, North America.

Becker Joins Impossible Foods

Impossible Foods today announced the hiring of Jessie Becker in the newly created role of Senior Vice President of Marketing. Becker will lead the B2B and B2C marketing, insights and brand marketing teams at Impossible Foods, effective immediately. She reports to Impossible Foods’ President Dennis Woodside, a tech industry executive who joined the company in March.

Jessie Becker

Just last month, the Impossible™ Burger made its worldwide debut in grocery stores at all 27 outlets of Gelson’s Markets in Southern California, all 100 outlets of Wegmans in the Northeast and two Fairway locations in Manhattan — the first time that the general public has been able to buy and experience the Impossible Burger at home. The results have been astounding. Impossible Burger immediately rocketed to the No. 1 position among all packaged goods sold at some of America’s favorite grocery stores — and has remained a top performer ever since.

“I’m thrilled to join Impossible Foods at such a significant inflection point for the company as it embarks on unprecedented growth and new channel launches,” Becker said. “It’s an incredible opportunity to build the plant-based food category with world-class marketing — while having a profound impact on our planet.”

Becker joins Impossible Foods from Google, where she served as Director of Marketing. Prior to Google, Becker was Chief Marketing Officer at Optimizely, a B2B software company.

Before that, Becker spent 12 years at Netflix, starting in 2000 as one of the first people hired in the marketing department and rising to interim Chief Marketing Officer during a period of breakout growth. At Netflix, Becker was responsible for recruiting millions of consumers to the subscription content service and accelerating Netflix’s expansion into more than 50 countries, using creative digital acquisition tactics and partnerships with device manufacturers and retailers.