You have most likely heard of plant-based dairy alternatives made from cashew, but what about meat alternatives? If you ask Swedish start-up Cashewmeetly, this is where the next big opportunity in plant-based meat lies.
Founded in 2021, Cashewmeetly makes its meat substitute from cashew apples – the fruit that is left, and often thrown away, after the nuts have been harvested. The fruits are picked and dried by a women's cooperative in Senegal and then sent to Sweden where they are processed and turned into a fruity, slightly acidic meat alternative that can be boiled, fried or grilled. This way, Cashewmeetly saves some of the 16 million tonnes of cashew apples that go to waste in Africa every year while providing employment opportunities for women in rural Senegal.
In addition to basing the product on a unique ingredient, the extremely short ingredient list is what really sets Cashewmeetly apart from the competition. The product contains 100% cashew apple – nothing less, nothing more. It is a product developer’s dream in that sense, in a category that is plagued by long ingredient lists full of additives. Further, Cashewmeetly claims that the product provides five times the amount of vitamin C found in an orange.
At SEK 39.90 ($4.64/€4.02) per 225g bag Cashewmeetly may seem premium priced, but the fact that one bag of dried product makes around 700g of finished “meat” means that Cashewmeetly is affordable compared to other plant-based meat substitutes, and compared to animal-based meats.
Despite being very new, Cashewmeetly can already be found in over 300 online and offline stores across Sweden. This is much thanks to the support from Axfood, the country’s second biggest retail player which invests heavily in climate friendly food initiatives.
Is Cashewmeetly really the future of good cooking, as the brand’s slogan claims?