Fable isn’t pretending to be meat, and it isn’t over-processed. It’s offering a viable alternative to the meat in our diets, with a tasty product that’s made of mushrooms.
What does your business do, and who are your customers?
Fable offers an all-natural, chef-quality meat alternative crafted from shiitake mushrooms that are nutritious, flavourful and naturally meat-like in texture.
We leverage the natural umami flavours of mushrooms, and our meaty mushroom products are minimally processed and free from GMO, preservatives and artificial ingredients.
Our Fable Meaty Mushroom products are truly versatile meat alternatives that showcase all the umami goodness in mushrooms – from burgers at premium burger chain Grill’d, to Mexican shredded meaty mushrooms at Mexican chain Guzman y Gomez, salads with SaladStop! in Singapore, poke bowls with Fishbowl in Bondi Beach, to a stunning range of Vietnamese dishes with HOP Vietnamese in London, or chilli with Beatnic in New York City,
We’re now on the menu in over 1,000 cafes and restaurants in Australia, the UK, USA and Singapore. In addition our products are ranged in leading supermarkets and meal kit companies.
What’s your mission?
Fable’s mission is to help end industrial animal agriculture. We do this by making delicious meaty food from mushrooms.
What does it mean to you, to be a ‘social enterprise’?
To me, being a ‘social enterprise’ means leverage capitalism to fulfil a mission that solves social problems we are facing as a society and creates positive social change.
At Fable, we don’t just make delicious meaty food – we’re making good food a force for good. We are committed to cultivating the way to a sustainable food system and reducing our impact on the planet.
Our mission is to help end industrial animal agriculture and make it easier for people to reduce their meat consumption. We do this by offering delicious, more sustainable and healthier food choices. This is why we exist, and why we make delicious meaty food from mushrooms.
Can you scale a mission? Are there challenges around growing your business, while also staying committed to your impact thesis?
Making food from animals is very inefficient. It takes ~12kg of plants to produce 1kg of beef and around 8kg of plants to produce 1kg of pork. We can take 1kg of mushrooms and turn them into 1kg of meat. This efficiency allows us to scale more easily than industrial animal agriculture has and puts us in a strong position to replace it.
How have you seen investor sentiment change over the past 5 years, when it comes to recognising the value (or cost) of being mission-led?
5 years ago I don’t think I’d heard of the phrase ‘impact investing’. Now there’s a whole industry built around this. The awareness of the negative impact humans are having on the planet, coupled with our ability to fix it has changed dramatically in the last 5 years. There’s also been a recognition that while activism has a strong place, capitalism is an incredible system for organising people, capital and resources. Impact investing and social enterprise provide an incredible way to scale good.
Was there a business (either local or globally) that influenced the development of your organisation?
We’ve not built a new coal fired power station in Australia for more than 8 years. This isn’t because power companies necessarily want to do good for the planet, it’s because generating power from alternative sources like solar and wind is now more economically viable. I find this inspiring and I think the same thing will happen in the meat space.
Early meat alternative companies like Impossible and Beyond also helped inspire me into the space. Patrick Brown (Impossible) and Ethan Brown (Beyond Meat) were some of the first people to see the opportunity to leverage meat alternatives to reduce meat consumption and take the plunge in attempting to scale this in a meaningful way.
What’s in store for your business in 2022?
Our next stage of growth is to expand the business into the US and UK. We will be growing our teams in these two countries.
We have been investing heavily in R&D and product development and will be launching new products later this year along with some exciting partnerships.
We’re looking forward to bringing our delicious meaty mushrooms to more people through food service, restaurant and retail partners.