Navigating Natural and Organic: Michael Fox, Fable Food Co.
The natural and organic industry is continuously growing and shifting, with new trends, regulations, products and practices being introduced into market everyday. How does one keep on top of it all? Naturally Good has you covered, as we speak to industry professionals and experts on the hottest topics and trends, business practices and solutions, and what’s happening in the natural and organic industry.
Wanting to combine a craving for meat and healthy cooking habits at home, Fable Food Co was born, providing meat alternatives with nutritional value and minimal environmental impact. Michael Fox, CEO of the company, gives us a look into how they create their products at Fable Food Co, and his views on the rise in the popularity of plant-based meats and what retailers can do to jump on board and introduce plant-based meats into their range.
What trends are encouraging the rise in plant-based meats?
Consumers are demanding healthy, sustainable and ethical alternatives to meat from animals. This rise in consumer demand has seen food companies investing in creating delicious meat alternatives made from plants and in Fable’s case, mushrooms. These products now have incredible taste and texture and can easily be substituted in for meat from animals, leading consumers to making this change in their diets.
What types of plant-based meat products are in demand?
Consumers still love the taste and texture of meat from animals. They want an eating experience that replicates eating meat and is also healthy for them, is environmentally sustainable and ethical. So, they’re open to replacing all the meats they eat that come from animals.
Naturally food companies are focusing on the higher volume meats first, so minced beef, sausages, burgers and chicken have all been the first products to be replicated. In Fable’s case, our Chief Science Officer Jim grew up in Texas and loves the taste of slow cooked meats. Jim worked for 10 years as a fine dining chef, then studied Chemical Engineering and Agricultural Science majoring in Mycology (mushrooms science). Jim has used his scientific understanding of mushrooms coupled with his culinary expertise to create Fable which can be used to replace slow cooked meats like pulled pork, braised beef and beef brisket.
What advice can you give retailers looking at improving its plant-based meats range?
Do it! Consumers are demanding plant based meat alternatives and they’re deliberately seeking out stores with great ranges of plant based meat products. Approximately 13% of the dairy market is now plant based. Plant based meats are still less than 1% of the market but they’re going to quickly catch up (and in my view go a lot further). The category is growing quickly, as are the range of products available in the market.
There are great products out there and it’s much easier to build a great range in your store than it was even 12 months ago! Take a look at what chefs are using in restaurants, try the products yourself and your customers are going to thank you for offering a great range for them.
Looking to build your natural and organic ranging or get your products up onto shelves (physical and online) and into the hands of consumers? Head to the Naturally Good Product Directory and list your business today.