Written by: Kimberly White

Kellogg-owned MorningStar Farms is expanding its plant-based portfolio. MorningStar Farms announced the launch of its latest vegan offering, Incogmeato, earlier this week.

The Incogmeato line will feature the company’s first ready-to-cook plant-based burger and plant-based chicken tenders and nuggets. The Incogmeato burger will be sold both in the refrigerated meat case and frozen section of grocery retailers in early 2020.  

With the success and rising popularity of Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, the company is now aiming to reach consumers living a ‘flexitarian’ lifestyle. While MorningStar Farms has offered vegetarian and vegan options for many years, they’ve never attempted for their products to taste like meat. 

“As more consumers are choosing a ‘flexitarian’ lifestyle and actively reducing meat, we’re thrilled to be extending the MorningStar Farms portfolio with a delicious and satisfying meat-like experience,” said Sara Young, General Manager, MorningStar Farms, Plant-Based Proteins.

Plant-based meat options are becoming increasingly popular with consumers. Approximately a quarter of the U.S. population is incorporating plant-based options into their diets. 

“Plant-based proteins are no longer just a meat replacement, it’s now its own category,” said David Portalatin, NPD food industry advisor and author of Eating Patterns in America.

In 2018, the market for meat substitutes was estimated to be $4.63 billion and is expected to climb to $6.43 billion by 2023. According to Barclay’s analysts, the faux meat market could reach $140 billion over the next decade and could capture 10% of the $1.4 trillion global meat market. 

As demand continues to grow, several fast-food chains have begun offering plant-based meat alternatives. Del Taco, Carl’s Jr, White Castle, Tim Hortons, Burger King, and Dunkin’ have all been promoting their new plant-based offerings, bringing more vegetarians, vegans, and flexitarians into their restaurants. 

Prior to the national rollout for Burger King’s Impossible Whopper, the fast-food giant noticed increased traffic at Burger King restaurants that offered the plant-based Whopper. 

“It’s driven new guests into the restaurant. We’re really excited to be able to attract that customer,” said Chris Finazzo, President of Burger King North America. 

However, burgers aren’t the only option consumers have taken to. In August 2019, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) became the first national fast-food chain to offer plant-based chicken in the United States. Partnering with Beyond Meat, KFC tested ‘Beyond Fried Chicken’ at one location in Atlanta.

KFC’s new product proved so popular that it sold out within five hours. According to KFC, the restaurant sold as many plant-based chicken wings and nuggets in one day as they would their traditional popcorn chicken in a week.