PETALING JAYA: Plant-based meat producer Phuture Foods plans to expand its reach to 1,000 locations in Malaysia this year, from 300 currently, by partnering more food service providers.
CEO Jack Yap said these locations include restaurants, food chains, convenience stores, hotels and resorts – across different segments of food service partners – as well as premium grocery stores, where Phuture products are retailed at RM19-RM26 for 400g.
“For restaurants, rather than providing them the products, we’re supplying them with total plant-based food solutions. That’s our forte. We work closely with food service partners, understanding their needs ... from there we would design a solution that fit them. B2B (business-to-business) is our focus, it’s about finding the right partners,” he told SunBiz recently.
He explained that the company sets its sights on working with food service partners, like devising its high-fibre plant-based chicken chunks that can be served in coffee chains and inflight meals (in the future).
Yap is adamant in maintaining this B2B focus, as food service providers now make up 70% of its business, while the remaining 30% comes from retail.
Founded in 2018, Phuture manufactures plant-based products at its factory in Klang, Selangor. The Phuture plant proteins and fibres matrix mimics the texture and taste of meat with enhanced nutrition.
The Malaysian market makes up 60–70% of its sales revenue, but for the next six months, Yap foresees it will be a 50:50 ratio coming from Malaysia, while the other half will be from Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore and Hong Kong.
“Sales from these markets (outside Malaysia) will be picking up because chicken is the staple protein source for their people.”
Phuture’s hero product is its high-fibre chicken, and 70% of the company’s sales are from plant-based chicken products.
Having secured RM7 million from investors in Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, Phuture continues to raise fresh funds from venture capitals and angel inventors to ramp up its production. Yap said by February 2023, it is targeting an internal production of 200 tonnes a month.
“Our production capacity cannot cope ... we’re beefing up to meet the demand,” said Yap.
He added that the company is looking at expanding its plant-based beef range and launching a plant-based seafood range of products next year. All these are in line with the company’s expectations to doubling its revenue every six months.
“Our high-fibre chicken is a fibre-based product. We use plant fibres like wheat fibres, oat fibres, apple fibres or bamboo fibres. We want to address the fibre gap burden. We don’t want to treat it only as a protein source. We want to make it a better nugget – a nugget that can nourish (given the lack of fibre in our dietary nutrition).”
Looking at the recent chicken shortage, Yap, a vegetarian, advocates plant-based chicken as part of the considerations for a sustainable, long-term solution.
Shop for Phuture’s products here