meatless farm

Source: The Meatless Farm Co 

The brand launched into UK supermarkets last autumn

Plant-based brand The Meatless Farm Co has appointed ex-Lidl CEO Jesper Højer as its new chairman.

The Dane, who stood down as Lidl CEO in April after two hears at the helm of the discounter, is the latest in a series of senior appointments at The Meatless Farm Co as it gears up to expand globally.

Lone Thomsen joined as chief marketing officer from Coca-Cola in September, while the company appointed Peter Hynes, who has a background at Unilever, Smith & Nephew and Taylors of Harrogate, as head of research and development last month.

The Leeds-based brand secured its first supermarket listings in the US in June with Whole Foods Market. It is also available in Canada, Sweden and the UAE and eyeing further overseas expansion in 2020.

“I have been following the market for meat alternatives for some time and The Meatless Farm Co has a great opportunity to be one of the global leaders in this fast-developing food sector,” said Højer, who worked at Lidl for 16 years.

“I am impressed by the quality of both the products and the team, and aim to help build The Meatless Farm Co into an international business.”

Bringing an executive with the global experience of Højer into the business was “a marker not only of what we have achieved so far, but also the potential of The Meatless Farm Co over the next few years”, said founder Morten Toft Bech.

“The world is waking up to the need to reduce red meat in our diets, and we are ready to feed the growing demand for plant-based alternatives.”

The brand started making its products in 2018 and is now sold in Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and in the JD Wetherspoon pub chain in the UK. It recorded sales of £1.7m in the year to 7 September [Nielsen].