Beyond Meat Stock Soars on PepsiCo Venture to Develop Plant-Based Foods

Beyond Meat Inc. shares soared after the maker of alternative meat, whose growth model has long relied on high-profile partnerships, said it would team up with one of its biggest collaborators yet:PepsiCo Inc.

The two companies are forming a joint venture focused on creating, producing and marketing new plant-based snacks and drinks, according to apress release Tuesday. Terms of the venture, dubbed The PLANeT Partnership LLC, weren’t disclosed.

“This represents another attractive longer-term driver for BYND to capture more share in the expanding plant-based food ecosystem,” Oppenheimer & Co. analyst Rupesh Parikh said in a note.

Beyond’s shares jumped as much as 39% in New York, the biggest intraday gain since June 2019. The stock rose 65% in 2020, buoyed by more Americans cooking at home. PepsiCo was little changed Tuesday.

Beyond, whose namesake burger was an early entrant in the faux-meat wars, has helped grow its name recognition and reach by partnering with a series of big restaurant chains, fromPizza Hut toDunkin’. Earlier this month, Taco Bell said it willbegin testing a Beyond Meat menu item in the U.S., and it collaborated with McDonald’s Corp. in thecreation of plant-based patties for the fast-food giant’s new line of substitute meat products.

Beyond has also been growing distribution rapidly inside grocery stores, an area where PepsiCo commands a lot of shelf space. The maker of Quaker Oats, Doritos chips and Gatorade will bring its marketing, brand-building and distribution weight to the partnership, while Beyond offers its expertise in plant-based protein development and its success with young consumers.

“With PepsiCo’s reach and distribution, Beyond Meat will be able to enter new categories and channels and accelerate bringing these products to markets around the world,” the companies said in an email. The specific portfolio of products is still in development.

— With assistance by Deena Shanker, and Janet Freund

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