Blue Apron (NYSE: APRN) stock was climbing the charts today after the struggling meal-kit service announced a new partnership with Beyond Meat (NASDAQ: BYND), the fast-growing plant-based protein company.
Shares of Blue Apron were up 49% as of 11:13 a.m. EDT, while Beyond Meat had gained 3.5% on the news.
Blue Apron said it would begin selling meal kits with Beyond Meat burgers and other of the company's products in August, including signature recipes featuring the patty like Caramelized Onion & Cheddar Beyond Burgers.
CEO Linda Kozlowski explained the move, saying, "We know a growing number of customers are interested in plant-based proteins, whether as an alternative to meat, a desire to explore a new ingredient, or an opportunity to make more sustainable food choices." Ethan Brown, Beyond Meat's CEO, also touted the move, adding, "We're thrilled to partner with Blue Apron to empower consumers to prepare and enjoy delicious Beyond Burgers at home."
It's clear why Blue Apron would seek to tie its fortunes to Beyond Meat. The alternative meat company is seeing explosive growth as sales more than tripled in its most recent quarter as restaurants have jumped on the plant-based meat trend. Blue Apron, on the other hand, has been losing customers for several quarters are now as the meal-kit trend seems to have fizzled amid intense competition and the questionable value of the product itself.
Blue Apron has launched such partnerships in the past, including with Weight Watchers and other diet trends like Whole30, but customers have continued to abandon the service.
Adding Beyond Burgers to the menu may please some Blue Apron customers, and it will help Beyond Meat by giving the company more exposure, but it seems unlikely to make enough of an impact on Blue Apron's business to justify today's surge.
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