One of the leading environmentalists among Hollywood’s leading men, Leonardo DiCaprio, has added his name to the list of backers for the beef-less, veggie burger maker, Beyond Meat.
“I am thrilled to officially welcome Leonardo DiCaprio to the Beyond Meat family,” said Ethan Brown, the chief executive of Beyond Meat, in a statement. “His investment and role as an advocate reflects a shared vision that meat made directly from plants, like our Beyond Burger, has enormous benefits for human health, the climate, natural resources, and animal welfare.”
Turns out that ole Leo was helping out the company in its earliest days… providing feedback on the burgers as Beyond Meat prepared its vegetable proteins for their big debut.
“I look forward to continuing to collaborate as we bring delicious, satiating products to a rapidly increasing consumer base,” said Brown.
For his part, ole Leo waxed poetic and profound about his decision to join the meatless meat-substitute’s investor team.
“Livestock production is a major contributor to carbon emissions,” DiCaprio said in a statement. “Shifting from animal meat to the plant-based meats developed by Beyond Meat is one of the most powerful measures someone can take to reduce their impact on our climate.”
Beyond Burger is now sold in more than 2,000 stores, including stores owned by Kroger and Albertsons Companies.
“The company’s ability to create appealing, healthy meat directly from plants will go a long way in helping everyday consumers take action on climate change,” DiCaprio said.
Beyond Burger is also sold at fast food chains across the country, including BurgerFi, Epic Burger and Veggie Grill.
While Beyond Meat’s new investor has star wattage, the company’s competitors have bigger-pocketed investors. They include Impossible Foods, the Bill Gates-backed company that’s raised $75 million, and protein-based entrants like Memphis Meats and — seemingly — Hampton Creek.
In a market where other companies look to have raised mega-dollars, it’s going to take more than DiCaprio’s star wattage to make a dent in the market.