Vegan Food Group: VFC rebrands with plans to expand plant-based M&A

2023 was a difficult year for plant-based meat. With Beyond Meat, one of its biggest brands, seeing a falling share price​, and a range of businesses going into administration​, the market for plant-based meat analogues isn’t an unqualified success story.

However, UK-based plant-based brand VFC is not shrinking, but growing. Using its acquisitions to bolster its size, it hopes to expand its reach in the industry.

A growing network

VFC, or ‘Vegan Fried Chick*n’, is no longer just a plant-based chicken brand. The company is now Vegan Food Group, or VFG, and aims to expand with further plant-based acquisitions.

“VFG will be focused on business; growing organically and through acquisition,” VFC co-founder Matthew Glover told FoodNavigator. “We’ll only be investing in start-ups as part of our M&A strategy, but not in the typical VC sense.”

So far, the Vegan Food Group includes Meatless Farm, which sells plant-based products including vegan mince, vegan burgers and vegan steak and which VFC rescued from administration​ last year; and Clive’s Purely Plants, which produces plant-based pastry products such as pies, ‘sausagey rolls,’ and quiches.

The company’s new rebranding suggests a desire to expand. This could, should success allow, mean going global. “We’ll be based in the UK and EU in the short term, so that’s where our main focus will be. But, some of our brands already export to areas like the Middle East and Australia so we’ll keep an open mind generally about international expansion should it make financial and strategic sense,” Glover told us.