JPMorgan analysts did a little digging around about the McPlant — the plant-based sandwich created by McDonald’s Corp. in partnership with Beyond Meat Inc. — and have drawn the conclusion that it has largely been pulled from menus in the U.S.
Analysts spoke with workers at 25 McDonald’s
locations where the sandwich had been available and found that it no longer was.
“We … don’t know for certain that McPlant is entirely discontinued — it may still be available in some locations. And it’s possible, of course, that McDonald’s is only temporarily taking it off U.S. menus,” JPMorgan said. “But clearly this news isn’t good for the narrative.”
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McDonald’s has made the sandwich available across the U.K. and Ireland, but in April there was still no word on which direction distribution was going in the U.S. Prior to that update, BTIG analysts had said in March that channel checks found sales of the sandwich to be underperforming.
Beyond Meat has run into a rough patch, with results announced in May missing expectations. Onlookers have been awaiting news about the sandwich at McDonald’s since the test was expanded in January. A big-name partnership would likely boost sentiment about the alternative-meat company.
Beyond Meat isn’t relying solely on McDonald’s. It has recently announced that it’s selling plant-based pork patties on Tmall in China; it launched a jerky collaboration with PepsiCo in May; and Chief Executive Ethan Brown spoke at the Wall Street Journal’s Global Food Forum in June about a new sliced-steak product.
Beyond Meat shares fell 3.1% in Thursday trading and are down 52% to date in 2022.