There’s a surge in demand for yellow peas driven by the popularity of plant-based meat
As demand for plant-based meat alternatives continues to rise, food suppliers are banking on the popularity of peas. That’s thanks in large part to the success of Beyond Meat’s 2019 initial public offering. Bloomberg reports it was the stock market’s most successful IPO since the 2008 financial crisis. Major meat companies like Cargill and JBS have taken notice, clamoring to capitalize on the rise of alternative meats—a market expected to be worth $140 billion globally by 2029. Although soy protein still holds the top spot, agrifood companies are projected to expand the pea protein market by about 42 percent this year (China will quickly become a major supplier). Part of the pea’s rise in popularity lies with consumers’ changing tastes: Soy has gained a bad rap for concerns over genetic modification as well as its connections to Amazon deforestation, and wheat’s popularity began to decline as gluten-free diets proliferated. Meanwhile, the value of yellow peas continues to soar. Bloomberg reports it’s now the fastest-growing source of protein for plant-based meat.