As demand for plant-based meat soars, a new $11 million manufacturing plant has opened in Sydney

Proform Foods manufacturing facility launch. (L-R) Matt Dunn, Karen Andrews MP, Julian Leeser MP and Stephen Dunn. Image: Wes Nel
  • Proform Foods launched a new $11 million plant-based meat facility in Sydney this week.
  • The site will produce 5000 tonnes of plant-based meat under the company’s MEET brand.
  • Proform Foods was created in 2008 by Stephen Dunn, the founder of Vogel Cereals.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

There’s another plant-based meat contender in Australia.

Proform Foods launched its $11 million plant-based meat manufacturing facility in Sydney on Thursday, designed to produce 5000 tonnes of ‘meat’ each year. The 1,600 square metre facility is in Mt Kuring-Gai, in Sydney’s north, and will use 70% Australian ingredients in its plant-based meat.

Its products are made under the MEET brand and are designed to have the same taste and texture of traditional meat.

Proform Foods makes 28 different products including meatballs, burgers, “beef style” strips, “chicken style” tenders and mince. Its MEET range is available in supermarkets and is set for global distribution in 2021. And Proform Foods plans to triple in growth in the next year as the demand for plant-based meat grows.

MEETballs. Image: Wes Nel

The company was created in 2008 by Stephen Dunn, the founder of Vogel Cereals. His son, Olympic swimmer Matt Dunn OAM, serves as CEO.

“We are incredibly excited to officially open the next generation plant-based meat manufacturing facility,” Matt Dunn said in a statement. “The global demand for plant-based products is booming, and our Australian innovation wins on both taste and texture.

“With plans already in the works to expand globally, we anticipate that the business will become a global leader in the US$4.3B plant-based meat industry, creating new jobs and export growth in Sydney and across the country.”

The facility was opened by Federal Minister for Industry, Science and Innovation Karen Andrews and Federal Member for Berowra, Julian Leeser. Andrews highlighted that plant-based meat is one of six major priorities under the government’s Modern Manufacturing Strategy.

“Australians want to buy Australian Made and the world wants our food too,” she said in a statement. “By further growing this area of manufacturing we can create more jobs for Australians. This is a great example of value-adding to our proud agriculture industry, and alongside our meat producers, we can capitalise on Australia’s reputation for producing safe, premium, high-quality food.”

MEET joins the growing range of plant-based meat companies in Australia such as V2 Food and Fable. It invested $2.3 million in partnership with CSIRO as a research provider in 2006 and has since invested an extra $8 million in research and development, before spending $11 million on the new site.

Image: Wes Nel

In Australia, the plant-based meat sector is on track to generate $3 billion in sales and employ more than 6000 people by 2030, according to a report from Food Frontier. In addition, research from Colmar Barton found one in three Australians are consciously reducing their meat consumption, with health being a main reason for the decision. Other reasons include the environment, animal welfare, cost and growing range of plant- based that are available.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.