As of January 2021, bacon sales grew nearly 23% over the same period the previous year with sales reaching $489 million, according to IRI Integrated Fresh. According to Spins, sales of plant-based bacon are up 25% and the plant-based bacon market doubled in 2020 to $267 million. Regardless of the source, real bacon and alt bacon are loved.
There are a dizzying amount of plant-based meat alternatives including bacon. In addition, social media has been blowing up with DIY fruit and vegetable recipes to mimic bacon. At the beginning of the year, Hellman’s launched Vegan Baconnaise in the UK. MyBacon is a vegan bacon, free of gluten, GMOs, and nitrates. Its primary ingredient is Mycelium (fast-growing root structure of mushrooms) and includes salt, sugar, coconut oil, beet juice, and spices to replicate the taste and texture of traditional bacon. Prime Roots has added thick-cut, butcher-style bacon made with Koji (a Japanese fungus) in four flavors: Black Pepper, Hickory, Maple, and Sriracha. Made of textured pea protein, Sweet Earth Foods offers the Sweet Earth Awesome Bacon Burger, which features a smoky plant-based burger infused with vegan bacon bits. Vegan cook Tabitha Brown’s #carrotbacon recipe went viral on TikTok and to date, it has garnered 8.7 million views. #Bananapeelbacon is another TikTok phenomenon with 1.3 million views. In partnership with Ogilvy, Tyson Meals’ Wright brand made a 19 minutes and 22 seconds “Bacon Beats” record that features the sounds of bacon sizzling on side A and interviews with Wright Brand employees on side B.
National Bacon Lovers’ Day is celebrated annually on August 20. Don’t forget to mark your calendars and either eat real bacon or alt bacon!