“Carnal desire” – but make it vegan

The founders of PLANTY OF MEAT wanted to create a space for experimenting, where they could explore every last inch of the endless potential there is to be found beyond the classic animal proteins. So this time, for our Brand Story, we want to tell you a bit more about their venture.

The number of people choosing a plant-based diet is growing every day. To put it simply, the main reason for this is – in addition to health reasons – that people are more conscious of the world around them, making them more likely to go for vegan or vegetarian foods. Animal welfare and environmental aspects have become an everyday topic of discussion in our society. And many people, especially younger people, have clear values that they want to live by. This creates huge demand for good food that tastes great and is, at the same time, sustainable and plant-based.

Plenty of plant-based “carnal delights”

A great example of this positive development is the start-up PLANTY OF MEAT, whose mission statement can be found in its name. The play on words in “Planty” refers to the endless diversity of plant-based alternatives to meat which exist. It was these numerous “plant-based meat” possibilities which were the central idea which Johannes Biel and his supporters had in mind when they founded the company in Munich in 2019. None of the founders were vegans, however. They were stepping up to the plate in order to establish natural, plant-based, regional alternatives to traditional protein sources.

The challenge: to create a tasty source of protein using alternatives to meat

Before you establish a company, you need a good idea. And, as is so often the case, this idea came about by chance. The question of whether you could develop a meatless burger was something which everyone on the team had been thinking about. As some of them came from the meat trade, the standards of flavor and quality they set themselves were extremely high. It was with these high expectations and a clear goal in mind that the young company developed its first product. This meat substitute product was so well received by their customers straight away that they realized there was potential for so much more. This demand for more, or “plenty”, was what prompted the decision to establish PLANTY OF MEAT.

Right from the start, as Johannes Biel himself says, everything was one huge, exciting experiment. Is it possible to take a small team with no big budgets for marketing or advertising, and no established investor from the sector, and to develop a brand which achieves real relevance? It most certainly is!

Today, PLANTY, as the founders nickname their company affectionately, has managed to be listed with over 500 clients. These include grocery retailers, restaurants and catering companies. For a brand with a small core team and hardly any advertising, this is a huge success!

Whether you’re vegan or not – meat is losing its relevance

Who would have thought it: even today, the company’s core team still isn’t made up of vegans. PLANTY wasn’t founded with the aim of sending a particular message out into the world. Meat is just losing its relevance, as there are, quite simply, enough alternatives to it. It is losing its status as the main feature of our food culture. Developing suitable alternatives to meat, using sustainable regional protein sources, and exploring the possibilities there are outside of the classic protein sources – that’s what start-ups like PLANTY OF MEAT plan to do. And all without the need for any ideological blinkers.

Johannes Biel views the current level of product development as more than just an intermediate step. He’s of the opinion that the world of food is currently experiencing a sea change, and that tomorrow, we might all be talking about (and eating!) cultured meat produced artificially in laboratory conditions.

At PLANTY’s very own production facility, they mainly use premium proteins made from organic sunflower seeds. These provide the basis for their vegan burgers and mince products. For other products in the range, they use pea and wheat proteins from regional subcontractors. They have made a conscious decision not to use soy, as one of the company’s stated aims is to sell quality products with an outstanding ecological footprint.

You won’t believe it’s not meat

The result is a product which is barely distinguishable from the original meat it is imitating, while representing a great deal of additional value for the climate.

“Above all, we would like to offer flexitarians and open-minded meat fans a delicious alternative which wins them over in terms of flavor,” Johannes Biel says.

Creating alternatives which appeal to people who don’t want to go without the texture or flavor of meat is a real challenge. According to Biel, PLANTY’s customers are not usually vegans, but people who are trying to eat more consciously and reduce their meat consumption.

They have one thing in common: they are looking for healthy, regionally produced, sustainable alternatives, without following a particular ideology. While they still want to enjoy their food, they are aware of the many dramatic states of affairs in the world which are – directly or indirectly – linked to the food industry and factory farming.

In order to produce an alternative to meat which is almost identical to the original, knowledge from the meat trade is indispensable. Of particular importance is the right seasoning, which makes it possible to create the characteristic flavor of meat. Constant further training ensures that new impetuses are always being given to the high art of adapting the product’s structure and flavor to perfectly match the meat on which it is based.

The result is a product with a flavor to be proud of: blind taste tests show how well developed the techniques are in bringing the perfect meatless meat to our plates. Most of the participants in the taste tests can’t tell the difference between the vegan and the meat-based protein sources. In particular chicken, with its tender structure, and mince dishes, can be imitated with almost 100% accuracy. It is true that the fibrous consistency of meat is something which brands like PLANTY OF MEAT have now pretty much perfected.

The classics at velivery… which just so happen to be vegan, too

Chicken nuggets, schnitzel and fillets, as well as burgers, mince and sausages all have plant-based equivalents from PLANTY which have found their way to us here at velivery. Fresh, “meaty” products – but without the meat – delivered chilled to you at home: PLANTY OF MEAT and velivery make it possible! We can’t wait to find out what other delicious products the company will come up with in the future! We hope you enjoying trying them out!