Korea’s Better Meat Launches in the US With Vegan SPAM-Style Canned Ham
Korea’s Better Meats just launched in the US with SPAM-style vegan canned ham, along with cold cuts, meatballs, and sausage patties.
by Nicole Axworthy, VegNews
September 16, 2022
Vegan meat company Better Foods—the subsidiary of South Korean food retailer and distributor Shinsegae Food—recently debuted its canned vegan luncheon meat and other plant-based meat products such as cold cuts, meatballs, and sausage patties to the US market.
Earlier this month, Better Foods showcased its new Better Meat range of vegan meat products at Plant Based World (PBW) Expo in New York City. According to the brand, its soy-based canned luncheon meat drew extra attention from the event attendees because of its comparable taste and texture to traditional SPAM canned ham as well as its ability to be stored and transported at room temperature.
First invented by US-based Hormel Foods Corporation in 1937, pork SPAM was brought to Asia by United States soldiers during World War II and still continues to be a staple food in North America and across many Asian countries. In fact, South Korea is the second largest consumer of SPAM behind the US.
Better Meat aims to differentiate itself from other vegan meat brands with its vegan SPAM-style products, and at the PBW Expo, it emphasized the extendibility of menus prepared using Better Meat in restaurants and homes with various dishes using Better Meat, such as sandwiches, pasta, canapés, deep-fried foods, and tacos. It also drew visitors’ attention by explaining the social value of plant-based alternatives by promoting the benefits to animal welfare, health, and the environment.
“Better Foods has secured a wide range of high-quality meat substitute product lineups, such as canned ham, slice ham, meatball, and sausage patty, developed with the company’s independent technological power over [the] years,” Alex Song, CEO of Better Foods, said in a statement. “Following our debut at the PBW, we plan to accelerate our reach into the global alternative food market to fulfill our vision of, ‘We dream big to make a better world with Better Foods.’”
The Better Meat line first debuted in 2021 in South Korea, partnering with Starbucks Korea for plant-based cold cut sandwiches. The US-based Better Foods was created to boost Shinsegae’s competitiveness in the meat alternatives market and support research and development and global expansion of the brand.
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