San Francisco, California-based JUST (Eat JUST, Inc.) and Minnetonka, Minnesota-headquartered Michael Foods, a subsidiary of Post Holdings and one of the largest processors of value-added eggs in the world, announced a partnership to expand production and sales of bring plant-based JUST Egg in the United States.
Founded in 2011 as Hampton Creek Foods, Just has evolved over the years to manufacture a variety of plant-based foods including mayonnaise alternatives, dressings, cookies, dough and cultured meat. Its pre-baked folded version of JUST Egg was the Best New Frozen Product winner in Expo West’s 2020 NEXTY competition, as well as victorious in Delicious Living’s “Best Bite Awards” contest.
Under the partnership arrangement signed on May 18, Michael Foods will be the exclusive manufacturer, supplier and distributor of JUST Egg to foodservice and food ingredient customers that are already familiar with their frozen and refrigerated egg brands including Papetti’s, Abbotsford Farms and Davidson’s Safest Choice.
“For over 100 years, the Michael Foods family of businesses have leveraged quality ingredients and cutting-edge processes to offer the finest products and solutions to their customers. This partnership adds an innovative new product to their impressive portfolio. Our companies share a great deal in common,” said Josh Tetrick, co-founder and chief executive officer of JUST.
“We are excited about this new partnership,” said Michael Foods President Mark Westphal. “Eggs will continue to be a nutritious and affordable staple in America’s diet, and JUST’s plant-based egg products offer a great complement to our value-added eggs by allowing customers to serve every consumer their preference. Working together, we are bringing innovation and options to the food industry.”
JUST Egg comes in two formats: a fluffy, pre-baked folded egg patty, ideal on top of toast or inside a breakfast sandwich; and a pourable liquid that is convenient for scrambles, omelets, quiches, stir-fries and a wide variety of baking applications. Its key ingredient is protein derived from mung beans, a legume that has been cultivated for thousands of years and is a dietary staple in Asia.
The product is cholesterol-free, dairy-free, non-GMO, Kosher-certified and packed with as much protein as many other plant and animal proteins. Production of its ingredients require 98% less water, 86% less land and emit 93% less CO2 than conventional animal sources.
In the first full year of distribution, JUST has been listed by a number of major US retailers and grocers including Walmart, Kroger, Whole Foods, Safeway, Albertsons, Giant, Wegmans and Publix, as well as online via Amazon and Fresh Direct among others.
Overall retail sales have increased markedly since the brand’s debut, with grocery velocity advancing 51% since December. In addition, a growing number of quick service restaurants and other foodservice channels including college campuses, amusement parks, hospitals and corporate cafeterias have added JUST Egg to their menus.