Plant-based meats mainstream!

Posted by: Megan VanDomelen in: Food/Beverage -

There’s no arguing that animal-based food alternatives are in high demand right now. We’ve heard all about plant-based milk products and how they’ve continued to grow since 2014. The plant-based milk category has grown 3.1% over the last year, while cow’s milk sales have gone down about 5%, according to Nielsen. But, milk alternatives aren’t the only category on the rise – plant-based protein and meat substitutes are projected to reach $5 billion (with a ‘b’) by 2020. This year, Beyond Burger – a plant-based burger that looks, cooks and smells like meat – saw sales more than double, and shares jumped 21% in June.

Fast food chains are even jumping on the plant-based train. In 2019, the Impossible Burger – another meat alternative that is a blend of soy and potato proteins – announced partnerships with Burger King, Subway and Qdoba, while McDonald’s and KFC joined forces with Beyond Burger.

Another trending meat alternative is the hybrid meat-plant burger for consumers that are looking to reduce their meat intake, but not eliminate it. This trend is growing as more people are reducing their meat consumption but not going vegetarian or vegan. One brand that is leading the hybrid movement is Applegate (client). Their “Great Organic Blend Burger” launched in March 2019 is made for the “conscious carnivore” and features a blend of humanely raised organic meat or poultry, organic mushrooms and rosemary extract.

So, the question is, why is this new food trend booming right now?


Another Feast in the Books

Posted by: jillw in: Food/Beverage -

Feast Portland 2019 may have come and gone, but the highlight reel keeps playing in our minds and on our palates. Feast has become the nation’s food festival to beat, and for good reason. Much like our culinary landscape, Feast is always evolving, each time introducing fresh events, new locations and innovative showings from an expansive star-studded cast.

Here are some of our impressions from Feast Portland 2019 and its impressive cast of chefs, restauranteurs, and food and beverage purveyors:

Like real estate, it’s all about location, location, location

Crowds at marquee events like The Big Feast and Brunch Village responded well to locally made or Oregon-grown messaging. This year, we even saw an appearance from Burgerville, a Northwest fast food favorite for its focus on sourcing quality ingredients close to home. We think the message has been received: why seek ingredients from afar given the diverse and flavorful bounty at our doorstep?

Sweet or savory? Feast’s answer: Yes.

Why box yourself in? This year, The Big Feast featured numerous sweet and savory pairings that drew attention to the versatility of various ingredients. Coconut was a popular choice, sometimes showcasing its sweetness, other times its texture and crunch. Pickled toppings also added interest, from traditional cucumbers and onions to some unexpected items, like elderberries.


What Pie Tops Finn Partners’ Favorite Flavor?

Posted by: Rachel Neff in: Consumer Lifestyle - Food/Beverage -

In honor of Pi Day (March 14), we asked Finn employees to vote for their favorite flavor of pie. Yes, we know National Pie Day is Jan. 23, but are you really going to give up a chance for free pie in the break room? Really? Really? Then we want your slice. Well, 3.14 slices, to be exact.

Now, before revealing the winners, let’s dive into how we set this up. We were strict with the criteria. In fact, a bit of research went into the answer options. National lists from past years with top flavors and most popular choices. Google was widely consulted. Pies were shown in alphabetical order. One vote per person.

Any write-ins had to meet pie criteria. No cobblers, crumbles or crisps in this survey. Betty? Pandowdy? Grunt? Nope. It had to be pie.

While some respondents argued choosing merely one flavor of pie was a cruelty, there was a very vocal group of folks who reminded the survey-writers that pies could have savory options. Look, we see you, offices across the pond. The magic of shepherd’s pie or chicken pot pie didn’t cross our minds at first. We promise you’ll get a button to click on next year.


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