Plant-based pioneers JUST to manufacture in Asia for first time with South Korea GanongBio partnership

By Tingmin Koe contact

- Last updated on GMT

JUST Egg will be manufactured in Asia for the first time by South Korean firm GanongBio.
JUST Egg will be manufactured in Asia for the first time by South Korean firm GanongBio.

Related tags: JUST Egg, plant-based, Egg

Production of the plant-based JUST Egg will soon take place in Asia for the first time after the US firm sealed a deal with South Korean egg producer GanongBio.

Under the arrangement, GanongBio – one of the largest egg producer in South Korea – will be in charge of manufacturing and distributing the mung bean-based JUST Egg in South Korea.

The deal was announced by Jordan Tetrick, director of JUST’s business development during a keynote presentation at the Global Food Trend and Tech Conference held in conjunction with Seoul Food 2019.

Besides South Korea, JUST is also working on similar manufacturing and distribution relationships for JUST Egg in North America, Latin America, Europe and other parts of Asia such as China and India, FoodNavigator-Asia​ understands from Andrew Noyes, the firm's head of global communications.

Outside of the US, JUST previously struck a deal with Italian egg producer and distributor Eurovo Group​ and German poultry firm PHW Group for production and distribution of JUST Egg.

Official China launch

The firm also recently officially launched JUST Egg in China during a media conference in Shanghai. JUST Egg is launched on both offline and online channels, such as JD.com and Alibaba’s fresh grocery retail store Fresh Hippo.

On JD.com, a three-pack JUST egg is sold at RMB$259.00 (USD $37) or USD 12.50 per bottle.

At this stage, the product is imported from the North America. However, as seen in the case of South Korean partnership, Noyes said it has been engaging downstream manufacturing partners across Asia.

Subsequently, this will lead to lower prices, since the product is bottled and distributed in these regions.

The other retail partners include City Super and Ole’ supermarket.

Chinese’s acceptance

Sustainable eating is becoming part of a national dialogue, which in turn drives consumers’ interest and acceptance in plant-based food, according to JUST.

“Plant-based foods are increasing in popularity among Chinese consumers and more sustainable eating is becoming part of a national dialogue about the feeding the country in the future,​ Noyes said.

Previously, it was also reported that the Chinese – especially those who are highly educated with high income – are more willing to buy plant-based and clean meat​ when compared to the Americans and Indians.

However, major beverage maker Nongfu Spring begged to differ​ as seen from their experience selling plant-based yogurt.

It shared that there was a need to justify the price of plant-based food as Chinese consumers usually expect a lower price for plant-based products as compared to meat-based products.

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