Plant-based Oscar Mayer hot dogs are set to be one of the latest products to emerge from Kraft Heinz’s tie-up with Chile’s NotCo.

A range of plant-based hot dogs and sausages will be unveiled at next week’s ExpoWest trade show in California. The products are scheduled to go on sale at “major retailers nationwide later in 2024”, Kraft Heinz said in a statement yesterday (6 May).

Two years ago, Kraft Heinz and NotCo set out to launch plant-based products. At the time, the companies said their R&D efforts would use artificial intelligence. NotCo uses an AI programme – dubbed Giuseppe – to analyse plants to “come up with unique combinations that replicate animal-based products almost to perfection”.

The new range of Oscar Mayer NotHotDogs and NotSausages follow the launches of alternatives to cheese and mayonnaise. “We know people are hungry for plant-based meat options from brands they know and trust,” Lucho Lopez-May, the CEO of The Kraft Heinz Not Company venture, said.

The products are being launched into an overall US market for meat alternatives that has come under pressure in recent quarters, with demand and sales easing.

Last month, Beyond Meat posted another quarter of falling revenue and pointed to likely lower sales in 2024 as its US business continues to be hit by “weak” demand. February also saw the Nasdaq-listed business unveil the latest iteration of its product concept – the Beyond IV burger – which founder and CEO Ethan Brown said “delivers superior health benefits and taste”.

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Analysis, January 2023: Plant-based meat growth plumbs depths as pruning takes hold

In September last year, NotCo CEO Matias Muchnick took to social media to announce – briefly – a partnership between the plant-based company and Mars.

In a post on LinkedIn, Muchnick said the Chilean company and Mars were working together on “very exciting innovation projects”.

In 2022, Muchnick told Just Food the company was looking to make its technology available to other food businesses after securing another tranche of funding.