Australia’s interest in plant-based alternatives is high with 1 in 3 Australians actively reducing their meat intake!
One brand that continues to shine in the meat-free spotlight is Upton’s Naturals.
This year the brand has been featured in a number of retail and consumer-focused publications, including Ocean Road Magazine, Nourish Magazine, Female, Girl, The Australian Retailer, Live Kindly, Food and Drink Business, and Onya magazine!
Pioneers in the meat-alternative market, Upton’s Naturals caters to demand with seasoned jackfruit packets and Ready Meal Kits that tap into the consumer-driven convenience category while offering better-for-you, plant-based alternatives to regular meal kits.
Founder, Dan Staackmann says “doing what we believe in is the best part of this business, and to us, success is creating 100% vegan products that can inspire meat-free meals,” shared Staackmann.
“Unripe jackfruit is the source of an incredibly versatile and healthful meat alternative that is relatively foreign to the [Australian] market. We’ve made jackfruit easier to enjoy and more accessible to the everyday consumer, and the response from vegans and non-vegans alike has been amazing.”
A WIN FOR PLANT-BASED FOODS
Pioneers in the vegan food products industry, Upton’s Naturals are not afraid to stand up to those who are feeling threatened by the plant-based alternative industry either.
In early July, Upton’s Naturals and the Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA) teamed up with the Institute for Justice (IJ) to sue the state of Mississippi for violating the First Amendment right of companies to label food in ways that consumers understand.”
The company stated “Our First Amendment suit in Mississippi has forced the state to propose a new regulation making it clear that companies can sell veggie “burgers” and vegan “bacon.” This is a win for clear labelling and a loss for meat producers who wanted to cripple their competition.”
The Institute for Justice stated, “our lawsuit made it clear that subjecting plant-based food companies to possible criminal prosecution for using common terms on their labels would be a violation of their free speech rights. Mississippi has made the wise decision to change those regulations so that companies will be free to continue selling vegan and vegetarian burgers and other meat alternatives in the Magnolia State.”
The new proposed regulation reverses course from the law banning plant-based foods from using meat product terms like “burger,” “bacon” and “hot dog” on their labels, as well as the Department’s July 1 proposed regulation giving force to the ban. The Department’s July 1 proposed regulation has now been withdrawn.
PLANT-BASED LABELLING IN AUSTRALIA
Many states in the US have passed or are considering implementing similar restrictions on how plant-based foods can be labelled. In Australia, both dairy and meat farmers are calling for transparency through labelling by creating a similar restriction on labelling terms, including a ban on calling nut milks ‘milk’, and limiting potentially ‘misleading’ terms on meat-free alternatives such as vegan ‘bacon’ or plant-based ‘burger patties’.
The CEO of the National Farmers’ Federation in Australia, Tony Mahar states, “the two products – meat and plant-based proteins – can coexist, but we want people to be informed about what they are buying through accurate and honest product labelling.”
It’s a debate that we anticipate will be happening for some time. Yet, regardless of how plant-based alternatives are labelled, there’s no denying that the demand for this exciting category is on the rise!