Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Hampton Creek: Remember All Our Vegetarian Talk? Never Mind

Following up on yesterday's "Bro Culture Apparently Works Best With An Unending Supply of Other People's Money: Hampton Creek Edition".

From ecorazzi:
Just Whatever
I do not know what cows have done to Josh Tetrick, CEO of Hampton Creek, but it must be something egregious for him to exact revenge by using them in his company’s products. Yes, the darling of all vegans, the plant-based company originally established to replace eggs in mayo, has now deemed dairy to be acceptable – whether in terms of fairness or sustainability – all to satisfy our palate pleasure. Their “Just Cookies White Chocolate Macadamia Nut” contain “whole milk powder, nonfat dry milk [and] milk fat”.

Back in distant 2015, when Hampton Creek managed to rake up a $90 million investment, primarily from Silicon Valley including Bill Gates, Tetrick was in the media touting his company’s sustainability cred. Tetrick said “[I’m] more concerned about changing the world than making money. ‘We’re beginning to have an impact with water not being used, with land not being used, with carbon emissions not being pushed into the atmosphere, with to some extent chicken eggs not being used as much,’ he says. “That’s what we will continue powering away for.’” I guess the memo on the environmental impact of dairy got misplaced and the cow milk “not being used as much” was immaterial.

But just whatever! Hampton Creek is doing their bit for the animals, right? In 2015, the veganverse was all like “yeah the world is going vegan!” But yeah… not so much. All that happened – then and now – is that a company made a product. Then, it capitalised on the expanding demand of plant-based products. Now, when its investors want larger returns, it turns to exploiting the most vulnerable.

I am deeply sceptical that a company that managed to create chicken egg substitutes could not come up with a viable replacement for dairy in this new cookie. The dairy ingredients must be so cheap that the business case, in terms of profit margin of using dairy versus non-dairy and/or market expansion opportunity, must have been open and shut. So, ditch the ethics and the science and just follow the money.

Despite what it seems, this is not an indictment of Hampton Creek. Ultimately, I do not care what they do....MORE
How can you know if someone is a vegan?
Don't worry, they'll tell you.
The joke also works for U.S. marines but a bit coarser in the delivery: "They'll effin tell you".

And in other marketing moves, via Co.Design:

Artisanal Branding Grows Up
The darling vegan brand Just by Hampton Creek wants to appeal to Walmart shoppers—without getting shut down by the FDA.... 

Hampton Creek has remade its Just line of products. [Photo: courtesy Hampton Creek]
The old line of Just products. [Photo: courtesy Hampton Creek]