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Since launching in 2019, Seoul, South Korea-based UNLIMEAT has become one of Asia’s most popular plant-based alt-meat brands – and now the label is coming ashore in the U.S. for the first time. According to an announcement from the company today, retail products are now on sale online for U.S. customers, and could be be appearing on grocery store shelves and restaurant menus in the near future.
UNLIMEAT execs recognize that there is no shortage of alt-meat brands competing in the U.S. market – which accounts for 21 percent of all global demand for plant-based protein products – but, the company says, it stands apart by leaning in on its Korean heritage.
“There are many players in the US meat alternative scene […] however, none of these brands offer products suited to Asian cuisine. From Parasite to Squid Game to BTS, Korean media has exploded in popularity, and this surging popularity has led to growing interest in Korean food,” reads a company statement. “As a Korean brand, UNLIMEAT’s newly launched Slices and Pulled Barbecue were designed from the ground up with Asian cooking in mind, particularly Korean dishes such as bulgogi and stir-fried meat with Gochujang.”
For the launch, the company has partnered with California-based grocery chain Wooltari, which specializes in Korean foods. As of today, five UNLIMEAT items are available in its online store, available to ship nationwide. They include the original slices, a pulled ‘bbq’ product, ground meat, burger patties, and vegan cheddar ‘cheese’ slices.
Promising “robust beef-like flavor and texture,” UNLIMEAT products are made from natural ingredients, including beans, coconut oil, rice powder, and beets. All state that they are fully vegan, some items are also labeled as gluten-free and nut-free. Full ingredients lists for all products can be found on the company website.
In Asia, products from UNLIMEAT and its parent company Zikooin appear on menus from some pretty big local and international brands, including Domino’s Pizza, California Pizza Kitchen, 7-11, Subway, and Sheraton hotels. So far, there has been no announcement that any of those partnerships will expand to U.S. locations.
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