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Canada’s Modern Meat to make plant-based meals in SA with Cucina Classica

(Source: Modern Meat)

Canadian alt-meat maker Modern Meat is to launch in Australia and New Zealand after sealing a manufacturing partnership with South Australia’s Cucina Classica, owned by Viveri. 

The plant-based range of meal solutions including meatballs, burger patties, crab cakes, mince and breakfast sausage will go on sale in Australia early next year. 

Cucina Classica MD Roberto Cardone says the partnership presents a “massive opportunity” as Australia becomes the third country in the world where Modern Meat products are manufactured, after Canada and the US. 

“The partnership will have great financial benefits for local producers and importantly create jobs in food manufacturing. Our joining of forces has the potential to produce food sustainability for the Australian population and help the planet lower its emissions by consuming less meat.”

Cardone says 80 per cent of frozen vegan meals on sale in Australian supermarkets are imported.

“A focus on local produce creates an exciting opportunity to partner with local growers to ensure that our products are sustainable and not imported where possible,” he said.

Tara Haddad, Modern Meat’s founder, said the company preferred to align with a trusted, reputable and purpose-driven brand when entering a new geographic market. 

“We have found that with Cucina Classica and we think we have a tremendous opportunity for growth through our collaboration.

“This new partnership enables our vision of making quality plant-based eating more accessible to consumers.”

Cucina Classica currently specialises in distributing ready-made meals, pastas, cakes, pastries, gelati, coffee, pizza and bread through national retailers including IGA, Coles, Woolworths, Foodland and Drakes.

“This partnership is a natural evolution for Cucina Classica, a brand that was born out of South Australia’s Cibo Ristorante & Pasticceria. We are now firmly focused on creating authentic Italian food and coffee experiences in the homes of everyday Australians,” said Cardone.

“With increasingly more Australians moving towards meat-free eating and exploring ‘meat-free’ eating days, we anticipate the Modern Meat offerings to be popular beyond the vegan and vegetarian markets. 

“Cucina Classica is passionate about being a market leader in the sustainable space,” said Cardone.

The partnership between the two companies was originally announced in January and at the time the two businesses said they would roll out products within the second quarter of this year. The new arrangement just announced will last four years.

Cardone was the founder of the coffee business Cibo, but recently severed ties after 20 years.

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