Shares of Beyond Meat (BYND), the maker of a plant-based burger, jumped 12.47% today, on news that investors and traders took to mean that competitor Impossible Foods is out of the running to supply plant-based burgers to McDonald’s (MCD).
Impossible Foods CEO Pat Brown said, Reuters reported, that his company wouldn’t be able to produce enough supply for such a big partnership. Which could logically mean that Impossible Foods is not actively pursuing a deal with McDonald’s to go with its deal at Burger King for the Impossible Whopper.
Contacted later by Bloomberg, Impossible Foods said that the comments from CEO Brown had been misinterpreted. “Our ambition is to be everywhere,” Impossible Foods spokeswoman Rachel Konrad said. “We would never close the door, never abandon a relationship.” The market concluded that was a fairly generic non-denial.
In September McDonald’s picked Beyond Meat for the test of a plant-based burger in 28 Ontario restaurants over a three month period. Today McDonald’s told Bloomberg in an email that the Beyond Meat patties that have been tested at some Canada locations are “exclusive” for the fast-food chain “with a recipe that is made by McDonald’s, for McDonald’s.” Whatever that means. The company didn’t mention Impossible Foods.
McDonald’s is selling the plant-based burger as the P.L.T.–which stands for plant, lettuce, and tomato.