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New Delhi: Tokyo-based company Next Meats has partnered with Indian food-tech start-up Vegan Meat India to launch meat-free alternatives in the country.

These plant-based meats are produced using soy, pea proteins and other plant extracts in factories that meet HACCP and ISO standards.

Next Meats could open a lab and manufacturing unit in India and develop more products for the Indian taste, the company said in statement.

The brand is also planning to launch its brick-and-mortar stores in India in the next fiscal.

Next Meats was launched in Tokyo in June of 2020. It currently has presence in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Vietnam and Singapore. Besides India, the company plans to launch its products in Italy, France, Russia, Spain, China and USA.

Next Meats, along with Vegan Meat India, will launch plant-based cakes, vegan cheese, tuna, egg and soya milk through an online retail presence in Delhi-NCR, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and Mumbai.

The two will work together to launch Next Tandoori Chicken, Next Herb Chicken, Next Classic Chicken, Next Chicken Biryani, Next Butter Chicken Curry, Next Yakiniku Japanese Taste, Next Spicy Yakiniku and Next Burger Patty for the Indian market.

The company has forayed in the Indian market as it is among the top consumer markets in the world, said Ryo Shirai, founder, Next Meats.

“We can’t shift our global eating culture of meat-based diets overnight. But if we focus on delivering the best tasting plant-based products, we believe it will lead us to a future where people will make a choice that is better for them and our planet," said Shirai added.

Mock meat has found favour among consumers with companies such as Beyond Meat in the United States offering a variety of food products. Such food typically has lower calorie and fat content and is known to be a source of protein and fibre.

The trend of meatless meats would be more popular in India, said Deepak Yadav, CEO, Vegan Meat India. "Diverse plant-based meat types such as plant-based chicken and seafood continue to grow in popularity, which is contributing to the growth of the market," he said.

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