The health craze that became popular in recent years have led to Filipinos taking a closer look at their eating habits. While many have increased their consumption of vegetables, meat remains a favorite in the local diet.
While many plant-based meat analogues have been available for decades, most of these earlier products fail to come close to the taste and look of actual meat.
Century Pacific Food Inc. (CNPF), one of the largest branded food companies in the Philippines, hopes to overturn this with the launch of its latest brand, unMEAT, a 100 percent plant-based meat, made tasty from simple ingredients.
“One of the biggest concerns about plant-based foods is that they are not as delicious or as pleasing to the palate as real meat,” notes Nikki Dizon, a senior executive at CNPF. “But our Nutrition Science team took that as a challenge, and completely delivered by coming up with a meat alternative that looks, feels, and tastes like meat. They made unMEAT from simple ingredients and extracted nutrients from real food rather than synthetic compounds so it’s healthier and more affordable.”
In the Philippines, unMEAT was first introduced through Shakey’s Pizza’s newest offering, the Good Burger. “We did a test market where we served unMEAT in over 100 branches in the Philippines. The response was significantly better than expected. Throughout the test, we have received a lot of support and buzz from the vegetarian, vegan, and flexitarian communities,” NCPF Chairman Christopher Po shared.
The launch of unMEAT was driven by a growing consumer demand to incorporate healthier food options into their diet, especially given the ongoing pandemic. This is evident in the shift of food trends shown on social media. “We are pleased to find that there is an emerging market for ‘better for you, better for the planet’ products. I believe that plant-based food will move from its niche into the mainstream,” Po added.
The new product line currently comes in 4 variants: Nuggets, Hungarian Sausages, Minced Meat and Burger Patty. CNPF aims to market the range as close to the price of real meat counterparts in keeping with its goal of providing affordable nutrition.
Following unMEAT’s successful initial rollout as Shakey’s Goood Burger, CNFP will also be partnering with more restaurants in the country. The company’s Global Brands Team has also started offering the product to customers across 80 countries including the USA, Singapore, China and the Middle East giving consumers in many parts of the world easy access to tasty, healthy, and affordable 100% plant-based meat alternative.