California company Eat Just hit a major milestone this summer with its vegan JUST Egg. This month, JUST Egg sold the vegan equivalent of 300 million chicken eggs, a major feat in its mission to disrupt the traditional egg industry with its vegan replacement. Instead of exploiting hens to make eggs, Eat Just figured out how to turn mung bean protein into a plant-based alternative that scrambles, bakes, and fries just like chicken eggs.
Why do we need a new way to make eggs? More than 1.4 trillion eggs are consumed annually worldwide. In addition to being a cruel industry that exploits the reproductive systems of egg-laying hens, producing eggs the traditional way is wreaking havoc on the environment—using 93 million acres of land and 51 billion gallons of water—while also creating breeding grounds for zoonoses such as bird flu. In contrast, Eat Just’s plant-based egg uses 98-percent less water and 83-percent less land, while producing 93-percent fewer carbon dioxide emissions.
“Every single plate of scrambled eggs you’ve made, each and every perfectly fluffy omelet, every last breakfast burrito, they’ve all had [an] impact,” the company posted on social media. “Together, we’ve now sold the equivalent of 300 million eggs, which means we’ve saved enough carbon emissions to remove 11,364 cars from the road, enough water to fill 16,572 Olympic-sized swimming pools, and enough land to create 20 Central Parks.’
JUST Egg made its retail debut in 2019 and has since expanded to thousands of retailers worldwide. In the last three years, Eat Just has partnered with a variety of ambassadors—including tennis legend Serena Williams, actor Jake Gyllenhal, and NBA superstar Chris Paul—to help bring its plant-based eggs to the masses.
The vegan eggs of summer
To further spread the word about its plant-based eggs, Eat Just sampled JUST Egg at some of the hottest events this summer. JUST Egg made its presence known as the official plant-based egg sponsor of the Vans US Open of Surfing, which ran from July 30 until August 7.
At the sporting event—which typically features heavier, animal-centric fare—booths set up with plant-based egg dishes enticed both spectators and competitors alike. In the athlete lounge, full-sized vegan sandwiches and breakfast tacos were offered to competitors to fuel them pre-tournament. In the main beachfront area, event attendees sampled miniature sandwiches and spoon bites of JUST Egg Folded and a sauce of choice.
Eat Just is also in the middle of showcasing the wonder of its plant-based egg at various music festivals around the country, going head-to-head with typical sponsors such as alcohol companies. In May, the company’s vegan eggs made their first music fest appearance at Broccoli City in Washington, DC before heading to EDC Vegas. June saw the mung bean-based egg hit Beyond Wonderland in George, WA and Bonnaroo in Manchester, TN. Last month, JUST Egg wrapped an appearance at Levitate Music and Arts Festival in Marshfield, MA.
In September, the touring vegan egg is closing out the summer at Primavera Sound in Los Angeles where Lorde, Nine Inch Nails, and the Arctic Monkeys are expected to bring energetic crowds.
Replacing the chicken and the egg
Eat Just is turning the old adage, “what came first, the chicken or the egg?” on its head with a revolutionary approach. Not only is Eat Just replacing chicken eggs with its vegan alternative, its cultivated meat subsidiary GOOD Meat is working to make chickens obsolete in other ways, too.
In late 2020, Eat Just became the first company in the world to get regulatory approval for its cultivated chicken. Now sold at restaurants across Singapore, GOOD Meat chicken uses a small cell sample from a live chicken to create a cell line that can be replicated to grow meat inside of bioreactors—a process that resembles beer-brewing.
In May, GOOD Meat announced a multi-year exclusive agreement with bioprocess equipment innovator ABEC, Inc to design, manufacture, install, and commission the world’s largest bioreactors which GOOD Meat will use to grow mammalian and avian cells into real meat without slaughtering animals. Under its new partnership, ABEC will build ten 250,000-liter bioreactors which will serve as the foundation for GOOD Meat’s production plant—which it plans to open in a yet-to-be-announced location in the United States. At scale, GOOD Meat’s complex will be able to produce 30 million pounds of cultivated meat annually.
Combined with selling 300 million units of its vegan JUST Egg, the chicken and the egg can happen at the same time and without any of the downsides of producing them the old-fashioned way.
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