Alternative protein products maker Beyond Meat announced Monday that it recently finalized a lease for a new research and development (R&D) center in Shanghai, China. The new facility will strengthen the firm’s ability to develop new plant-based meat products for customers and consumers in the Asia-Pacific region.
“The best-in-class R&D team we are building in Shanghai represents the next leg in our journey to become a global protein company,” Dr. Dariush Ajami, chief innovation officer for Beyond Meat, said in a statement. “This new resource will enable us to more precisely serve the palate of the Chinese consumer and contribute directly to the culture’s delicious cuisine, while joining our global effort to deliver plant-based meats that are indistinguishable from, healthier than, and, over time, priced at parity with their animal protein equivalents.”
Once operational, the facility will be staffed by a team of scientists and researchers and include new technology and lab facilities, including a pilot lab and sensory testing capabilities, for product development. A test kitchen at the site will be used by chefs and culinary experts to experiment with new products.
Beyond Meat entered the Chinese market in 2020 and recently opened a new manufacturing plant in Jiaxing. The new R&D facility will work with the Jiaxing plant to bring products to market faster.
The company said the site will open in the first half of 2022.