Unilever sets goal of $1.2 billion annual plant-based sales

Unilever announced a target goal of $1.2 billion annual sales of plant-based meat and dairy products by the year 2027 that will be fueled in part by plans for a wider roll-out of plant-based meat brand, The Vegetarian Butcher.

Doughman Headshot3 Headshot
(The Vegetarian Butcher)
(The Vegetarian Butcher)

Unilever announced a target goal of $1.2 billion annual sales of plant-based meat and dairy products by the year 2027 that will be fueled in part by plans for a wider roll-out of plant-based meat brand, The Vegetarian Butcher.

“As one of the world’s largest food companies, we have a critical role to play in helping to transform the global food system. It’s not up to us to decide for people what they want to eat, but it is up to us to make healthier and plant-based options accessible to all. These are bold, stretching targets which demonstrate our commitment to being a force for good,” Hanneke Faber, President of Unilever’s Foods & Refreshment Division, said in a statement.

The sales goal is a part of the company’s Future Foods initiative, which has two key objectives: to help people transition towards healthier diets and to help reduce the environmental impact of the global food chain.

Sales and consumer interest in plant-based food has skyrocketed in the past few years. The global plant-based market could reach $140 billion by 2029, according to research by Barclays.

Plant-based products currently make up a third of Unilever’s food and beverage platform. It would take a five-fold increase in sales to meet the $1.2 billion annual sales goal, the company said.

How they plan to achieve this goal

Unilever plans to create both new products and plant-based versions of brands it owns, which include Lipton, Ben & Jerry’s, Hellmann’s and Knorr.

The company also plans a wider roll-out of The Vegetarian Butcher, which it acquired in 2018. The plant-based meat brand is best known for its “nochicken chunks” and “naked chickburgers.”

The Vegetarian Butcher is now available in more than 30 countries and currently serves as the supplier of Burger King’s Plant-Based Whopper and Plant-Based Nuggets across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Other goals

As a part of the Future Foods initiative, Unilever also announced plans to halve food waste in its direct global operations, double the number of products high in vegetables, fruits, proteins or micronutrients and reduce the sugar and calories in its ice cream by the year 2025.

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