On July 9th, A&W introduced Beyond Meat’s beloved plant-based burgers at its more than 900 locations from coast to coast.
By August, demand had exceeded supply, and the Beyond Burger was taken off the menu indefinitely. Some locations even saw the veggie burgers outsell beef burgers.
We are now entering a critical period of the calendar year – winter – not knowing where or when to get a decent veggie patty around here.
Now, the Canadian government is looking to play saviour. According to The Western Producer, $153 million in federal grant money will be made available to Protein Industries Canada, a nonprofit consortium of plant-based food manufacturers. Protein Industries Canada runs processing plants for beans and peas, which are the main ingredients in A&W’s Beyond Burger.
“The consumer demand is clearly there and companies want to produce these new products but they need the raw material to produce them,” said Frank Hart, chair of Protein Industries Canada. “That is actually holding back food companies from moving forward on innovative products.”
The grant is part of a $950 million federal fund called the Innovation Superclusters Program, which seeks to boost innovative Canadian businesses.