- Blue Apron announced Tuesday that it would offer Beyond Meat products in recipes beginning in August.
- Shares rocketed more than 50% on the news, following months of declines for the food delivery service.
- Blue Apron is capitalizing on the booming demand for plant-based meat alternatives, which consumers can’t seem to get enough of right now.
- Watch Blue Apron trade live on Markets Insider.
Blue Apron is getting a much needed boost from plant-based meat.
Shares of Blue Apron soared more than 50% when the company announced Tuesday that it had partnered with Beyond Meat to bring plant-based proteins into its recipes. The first recipes with the plant-based meat will be available in August and will feature the Beyond Burger.
Shares of Beyond Meat were up more than 2.7% on the news.
“We know a growing number of customers are interested in plant-based proteins, whether as an alternative to meat, a desire to explore a new ingredient, or an opportunity to make more sustainable food choices,” said Linda Kozlowski, CEO of Blue Apron, in a statement.
The partnership comes at a challenging time for Blue Apron. It’s struggled since 2017 when it decided to go public the same week that Amazon bought Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, which added competition to the food-delivery space. Blue Apron has lost roughly 90% of its value since going public, and has appoointed a new CEO.
The company has struggled to maintain market share against competition such as Hello Fresh, and keep consistent customers. It’s also dealt with numerous complaints about the price, flexibility of meals, and recipes provided.
In June, the stock lost more ground when Morgan Stanley lowered its price target more than 70% on expectations that customer growth would keep deteriorating. Without new customers, Morgan Stanley said it is unclear that the company can make a profit.
Meanwhile, demand for plant-based meat alternatives has been unabashedly strong. Beyond Meat’s IPO has been one of the best performers of the year, soaring more than 584% since May.
And there is evidence that the market for plant-based meat alternatives is growing. Analysts have estimated that the current $14 billion market could balloon to $140 billion in the next decade.
Data released Tuesday by The Good Food Institute and the Plant Based Foods Association show that US retail sales of plant-based foods has grown 11% in the past year.
While plant-based milks continue to be the main driver, sales of plant-based meat were up 10%, bringing the category up to more than $800 million. Refrigerated plant-based meat sales grew 37% in the same period.
“Plant-based foods are a growth engine, significantly outpacing overall grocery sales,” Julie Emmett, PBFA’s senior director of retail partnerships, said in a statement.
Blue Apron is down 20% year to date.
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