LAKE FOREST, Calif., Oct. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — GTFO It’s Vegan officially launches GreatFoods Research & Advisory Services to help companies in the plant-based and vegan market achieve greater levels of success in this highly competitive and rapidly evolving sector.
According to the recent report “Plant-Based Foods Poised for Explosive Growth” published by Bloomberg Intelligence, the plant-based foods market is forecasted to reach 7.7% of the global protein market by 2030, with a value of over $162 billion, up from $29.4 billion in 2020. However, recent plant-based sales in the U.S. might indicate otherwise. Several recent articles published by FoodNavigator-USA reference the “weakening US retail sales of meat alternatives” — from July 2022 versus July 2021, total sales dollars increased 7.6% to $120.2m, while total sales volume declined 5.1%.
Marc Pierce, CEO and Co-Founder of GTFO It’s Vegan, the largest online retailer and wholesaler of vegan and plant-based products in the U.S. states “while the market overall continues to experience growth, the number of entrants in any one category – such as plant-based meats, seafood, or dairy– is accelerating faster than the overall growth of its category. This makes it harder for brands to succeed as they fight to acquire market share. There are simply too many products entering the market to ensure the success for everyone.”
Pierce continues, “when we first launched GTFO in May of 2020, there were 5 or 6 major players in the top selling categories. Now there are 30 or 40 all vying for their share of the market. This spells trouble for new entrants who may not have the market insight, marketing budgets, distribution presence, and most importantly, the product uniqueness to succeed.”
Even well funded players are suffering. Planterra Foods who launched the OZO brand a few years ago just announced it is being shut down by its parent company Brazilian-based JBS. Maple Leaf Foods, who owns Lightlife and Field Roast plant-based brands, is reallocating resources back to conventional meat amid declining sales.
As substantiated by the Good Foods Institute, billions of dollars have been invested in the plant-based space in the past few years. While great for the industry, many of these companies and investors may never see a return on their investment. Pierce continues, “It reminds me a bit of the dot-com bubble that burst in 2000. Many of the companies receiving funding may not have what it takes to succeed. ‘Me Too’ products are destined to fail and both companies and investors should think long and hard before launching new innovations that are not competitively distinct.”
GTFO It’s Vegan has the data to back this up. After husband and wife team Marc and Tanya Pierce launched GTFO in May of 2020 amid the pandemic, they have sold over 500k items across 50k orders to tens of thousands of customers. They now maintain one of the largest proprietary databases of plant-based sales data and consumer preferences, including thousands of product reviews and social media comments coming from their nearly 150k Instagram followers.
With this gold-mine of highly valued data, GTFO spent many months planning the launch of GreatFoods Research and Advisory Services to provide data, research, and advisory services to companies serving the vegan and plant-based sectors. GreatFoods’ solutions, combined with a carefully recruited team of industry experts, helps food and beverage companies navigate the complexities of developing, launching, and growing plant-based products and brands.
This is a natural evolution for GTFO. Prior to launching the company, Marc Pierce ran a successful market research and consulting business for nearly 20 years catering to the health, wellness and consumer products sectors. He also previously held leadership consulting positions with PriceWaterhouse Coopers and Ernst & Young. Marc started his career in brand management with Procter & Gamble.
GreatFoods offers a full suite of services, including: access to its proprietary Veganalytics™️ — detailed de-identified purchase trends, data, and benchmarks by category and consumer segment; quantitative and qualitative market research; and, advisory services to assist with product innovation, testing, launch and expansion of plant-based offerings.
Powering its suite of services is an industry first, inhouse developed SaaS solution called STAMP™️, a proprietary platform that enables companies competing in the plant-based sector to rapidly obtain feedback and purchase intent on their products.
Pierce states, “I am most excited about this piece of technology as nothing like this exists in the market today. We have the ability to push out concept stage and existing products in every box we send to our large base of customers and obtain real-time feedback on what is most important to these customers in selecting a plant-based product together with how well the product is delivering on their expectations.” In less than 10 days, GreatFoods can advise a company of its STAMP™️ score illustrating the likelihood a product will succeed or fail in the market.
With the GTFO’s online marketplace and the STAMP™️ solution, GreatFoods becomes the first company of its kind to bridge the gap between maintaining a qualified panel of nearly 50k vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians and plant-based curious customers, sampling products to these customers, and providing real time feedback from these customers.
To solidify market readiness, GreatFoods tested its offerings on over 50 new entrants and existing companies. Pierce states, “in prior research and consulting endeavors I would have had to outsource one or all of these components; now we have the full end-to-end solution to help companies learn what it takes to succeed…or alternatively make the tough decisions to regroup or exit, saving companies and investors from misplaced investment and costly mistakes.”
SOURCE GTFO It’s Vegan