Chinese food image: Ruthy Yang
For some time now, fake, faux, or imitation meat has been available in many European countries. KFC stores, for example have been offering variations of their menu based on vegetarian ingredients for some time.
Very loosely speaking, this is not necessarily new for China. The Buddhist culture has popularised tofu in varying forms. If you have ever wandered in to your local Asia part of town and the Tofu shops there or maybe your local deli, you will know what we mean.
Other than that Green Monday, a Hong Kong producer has had a vegetarian pork substitute product on the market since late 2018.
However, it is fair, we think, to say, China and Asia are largely pork loving countries. There has never really been any serious attempt to supplant pork as the meat of choice in China. This relationship was tested during the African Swine Flue Epidemic when pork prices in China rocketed sky high and beyond. [pun intend]
It was probably this that tempted foreign brands to chance their arm with Impossible Foods, KFC / Cargill and Starbucks / Beyond Meat and Papa Johns /Starfied announcing plant based meat variations to their product line from early 2020. Green Monday’s Omnipork increased its popularity selling well on Tmall and Hotels.
In another corner of then world a NZ company – Sunfed – has been having great success with Chickenless Chicken on their local [NZ ] market since around 2017. June 20th this year,  they launched Boarless Bacon. Not a pig insight- other than those tasting it maybe!
By coincidence-perhaps- on the same day a Beijing startup Zhen meat also launched its porkless fried pork tenderloin – aka bacon- and crayfish – both vegetable based.
We are updating our original indepth China imitation meat story on our “Tea and Chocolate Bar,” coming soon-ish. Meantime, for more about Zhenmeat, please follow the Caixin Story.
To talk about launching your brand in China and what is needed for success, please don’t be shy about asking.
Hello, I’m Everlyne Yu, founder and CEO of Uengager and WPBeijing Marketing Studio 2003.
I have a wealth of knowledge and experience in the China market and have been privileged to work with many international clients, such as VW and their release of their Bora and the extremely successful CC as well as a long term, ongoing relationship with Sodexo.
I am happy to chat and discuss any questions, no matter how small or trivial you may think. Probably someone has already asked the same question- many times!
In China Marketing- there is no such thing as a silly question.
To see how your brand can flourish in China, please talk to Everlyne now.