Plant-based protein is a growing industry with more customers than ever and celebrities are helping to build it.
Property and Rolexes have been superseded as savvy investments for the rich and famous. Now, it’s all about who can invest in the most innovative future food company. From plant-based protein to cultivated meat, the alt-protein sector has experienced a slew of celebrity support in recent years.
The following 10 celebrities have set themselves apart through their discerning investment portfolio:
1. Natalie Portman
Famous for: Being a Hollywood actor, from the age of 12.
Invested in: Boston-based Tender Food and French startup La Vie. The former specialises in whole-cuts and the latter in bacon.
Vegan or not?: Yes. Portman has been vegan since 2011, after first turning vegetarian. She is considered to be an activist and regularly speaks about her desire to see the world moving away from animal protein.
Bonus extra fact: Portman was born in Israel, a burgeoning hub for alt-protein.
2. Robert Downey Jr
Famous for: Being Iron Man. And Sherlock Holmes.
Invested in: New York’s MyForest Foods and San Francisco’s Nobell Foods. MyForest recently rebranded from Atlast Foods and looks to make bacon from mycelium. Nobell specialises in soy-based vegan cheese that properly melts.
Vegan or not?: Yes. Downey Jr. confirmed he had gone fully plant-based at a film premiere in 2020. He cited a love for legumes as a driving force.
Bonus extra fact: Downey Jr. announced in April that he is co-authoring a book about eliminating carbon emissions from diets.
3. Snoop Dogg
Famous for: Being Snoop Dogg and a rapper from the original old school influx.
Invested in: California’s Outstanding Foods, a manufacturer of pig-free pork rinds snacks. He is also an ambassador for Beyond Meat, seeking to educate BIPOC communities in particular about the benefits of plant-based living.
Vegan or not?: Confusingly, no. He is a huge advocate for the movement but is yet to make the move to veganism himself.
Bonus extra fact: Snoop officially converted to Rastafarianism in 2012. This lends extra insight into his appreciation for plant-based foods.
4. Lewis Hamilton
Famous for: Being a Formula 1 world champion.
Invested in: Chilean unicorn NotCo and his own burger chain, Neat Burger.
Vegan or not?: Staunchly vegan, yes. He takes it one step further as his beloved bulldog Roscoe is also plant-based.
Bonus extra fact: Hamilton claims he went vegan to be as healthy as possible while avoiding damaging the planet. He has faced his fair share of criticism due to the perceived hypocrisy of his career and environmental leanings.
5. Leonardo DiCaprio
Famous for: Finally getting an Oscar in 2016. And being one of Hollywood’s biggest stars.
Invested in: LA-based Beyond Meat, fellow LA brand Hippeas, San Francisco’s Wildtype, Dutch food tech Mosa Meat, and Isreal’s Aleph Farms.
Vegan or not?: Unconfirmed but largely questioned. His investment portfolio would suggest a plant-based leaning, though he has never formally declared himself meat-free.
Bonus extra fact: DiCaprio is a member of San Francisco-based Perfect Day’s sustainability council. He joined as an advisor.
Famous for: Being Mr Beyoncé. And a mogul.
Invested in: California’s Impossible Foods, Australia’s plant-based chicken brand Simulate, Oatly and Cali-based vegan cheesemaker Misha’s Kind Foods.
Vegan or not?: Not vegan but has dabbled, see below.
Bonus extra fact: Jay Z joined his wife in a 44-day vegan ‘diet’ plan that was designed to help her get ‘stage-ready’ ahead of a Coachella performance. Though it has been reported that he only completed 22 days.
7. Katy Perry
Famous for: Being a singer and judge on American Idol.
Invested in: California’s Impossible Foods (see Jay Z above).
Vegan or not?: Presumably, yes. Back in 2021, Perry announced that she was ready to go fully vegan, after transitioning toward the lifestyle over a period of four months. Perry’s dog, Nugget, joined her in becoming vegan. She revealed to fans that he had been lessening his meat intake alongside her and that he would be eating vegan food in the future.
Bonus extra fact: Perry dressed as an Impossible burger for the 2019 Met Gala and praised the product for getting her through her pregnancy with daughter Daisy, red meat-free.
8. Serena Williams
Famous for: Being one of the most spectacular athletes to grace tennis courts the world over.
Invested in: California’s Impossible Foods (see Jay Z and Katy Perry above) and U.S. vegan delivery service Daily Harvest.
Vegan or not?: When in training, Williams is strictly plant-based. She has cited this as helping with recovery and injury prevention. During off-seasons, she has admitted to relaxing her strict diet to include favourite ‘cheat’ meals.
Bonus extra fact: Like Katy Perry, Williams found herself turned off by red meat while pregnant and ate Impossible burgers instead of beef.
9. Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli
Famous for: Being a Bollywood sensation (Sharma) and an international cricket player (Kohli).
Invested in: Mumbai startup Blue Tribe Foods. The two have also become brand ambassadors, as they believe in the products so much.
Vegan or not?: Yes. The two had been vegetarians for years and decided to go fully vegan together. They have talked about it extensively on their social media channels. The two have 240 million followers on Instagram alone.
Bonus extra fact: In 2021, Kohli was the victim of trolling after netizens decided he had deceived them about his vegan status. The cricket player reiterated that he was a vegetarian and the time and had never claimed to be vegan. Both he and Sharma now say they are vegan.
Famous for: Knowing about that Hotline Bling. And being a rapper.
Invested in: LA-based Daring, a plant-based chicken startup.
Vegan or not?: It’s never been entirely confirmed, though he did spark a wave of excitement when he announced he no longer eats animals, during a Twitch stream in 2018. Vegetarian most likely. Vegan? Possibly. He definitely referred to himself as such in one Instagram post, so fans are drawing their own conclusions.
Bonus extra fact: In light of a potential vegan conversion, PETA sent the rapper a gift basket, to initiate a truce. The activist-led organisation had previously called the rapper out for wearing Canada Goose jackets.
Original source: https://www.greenqueen.com