JBS USA has announced that it is closing down its plant-based meat operation, Planterra Foods, just two years after launching.
Head of corporate communications at JBS USA, Nikki Richardson, told FoodBev: “JBS USA has made the decision to discontinue operations in its US-based Planterra business unit. We continue to believe in the potential of plant-based options for consumers and remain committed to the alternative protein market.”
She added: “JBS will focus its efforts on its plant-based operations in Brazil and Europe, which continue to gain market share and expand their respective customer bases. We are actively working with the Planterra workforce to provide employment opportunities at other JBS locations.”
Situated in Colorado, Planterra is a plant-based company owned by JBS Foods and sold at retail under the Ozo brand, known for its alternative meats such as nuggets, burgers and meatballs. The plant-based alternatives first hit the shelves in March 2020.
In August 2021, Planterra announced it would open a new R&D innovation centre at its Colorado headquarters. The new centre allowed for new opportunities to test ingredients and product innovations, as well as growing office space and employment for the local area.
Denver Business Journal reported that in closing down the 189,000 square foot factory Denver factory, there will be an expected job loss of more than 100.
Planterra was not JBS’ only plant-based business, in 2021 it acquired plant-based meat producer, Vivera for €341 million. The acquisition included three manufacturing units and an R&D centre in The Netherlands.
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