Pioneering Brazilian plant-based meat brand The New™ announces fresh backing from Lever VC and Paulo Veras, founder of Brazil’s first tech unicorn

March 16, 2021 - 3 min read

Bruno Fonseca, Cofounder of The New Butchers Bruno Fonseca, Cofounder of The New Butchers

Investment will expand production and sales for The New; company was recently profiled in The New York Times as a leader in the explosion of interest in plant-based meat in Brazil

The New, one of Latin America’s fastest-growing plant-based meat brands, announced today it has secured funding from Lever VC, a leading global investor in the alternative protein space, and Paulo Veras, Founder and CEO of 99, Brazil’s first tech unicorn. Funding will be used to complete expansion of a 1,000 square meter production facility amid heavy demand for the company’s products at national and regional retailers.

Launched in September 2019 by plant-based triathlete and successful entrepreneur Bruno Fonseca, The New produces plant-based salmon, cod, chicken, and beef products. All products are non-GMO and free of all common allergens including soy and gluten, positioning The New alongside Beyond Meat as one of the only high-quality plant-based meat brands free of these two common allergens. The company has already grown to over 700 points of sale in its first 18 months of operation, including placement at Brazil’s two largest retail chains Pao de Acucar and CarreFour.

“Since 2017 we have been researching and developing our products with the goal of offering something more delicious and cleaner than everything else in the Brazilian market today,” said Bruno Fonseca, CEO and founder of The New. “For example, we do not use hydrogenated palm fat, choosing instead to use natural coconut fat, which when combined with pea protein has an incredible flavor.”

That flavor has caught the attention of consumers seeking a healthier and more sustainable diet, as well as leading supermarket chains. Brazilian retail leader Pão de Açucar, one of The New’s key accounts, reported that plant-based burgers accounted for 30% of all hamburger sales at its stores last year.

"We are incredibly excited to be partnered with The New," said Nick Cooney, Managing Partner at global alternative protein fund Lever VC, whose partners were early backers of Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods. "When we carried out consumer taste panels of plant-based meat brands in Brazil, over 90% liked The New's products best, and by a very wide margin. We love their products, their team, their commitment to R&D and continuous improvement, and their fast sales growth. Plant-based meat is beginning to boom in Latin America, and we think The New will be a clear category leader."

For angel investor Paulo Veras, who founded and ran Brazil’s first tech unicorn, ridehailing app 99, The New is where food meets tech. “The New is spearheading the food revolution. Through its healthy and tasty plant-based meat alternatives, it addresses some of humanity's biggest challenges such as food, health and climate change", said Veras.

The New’s product line consists of The New Chicken 2.0™, a pea protein-based product that is the first plant-based chicken fillet in the Brazilian market; The New Burger™, a classic beef-style burger made with pea protein that in consumer taste tests has consistently outranked all competitors in Brazil; The New Fish™, the first salmon derived from peas along with natural paprika extract, and rich in omega 3; as well as newcomers cod fillet and cod dumplings, based on a pea protein and jackfruit mix that mimics the fibers of fish meat.

Media contact: Camila Trama - +55 11 97719-0998 –

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