Pooja Yadav

Licious creates a category for 'meat cheat' days

The brand has now forayed into both animal as well as plant protein.

Home-grown meat brand Licious has made its mark among meat lovers across the country over the past six years. The brand has now diversified its portfolio by launching 'UnCrave', its direct-to-consumer, plant-based meat brand.

UnCrave's product range includes protein-rich vegetarian, chicken and mutton seekh kebabs. The products are free of artificial preservatives and trans fat, and have a 12-day shelf life.

Ahead of UnCrave's launch, Licious uploaded an interesting teaser video for meat lovers.

A masked man is seen vandalising a Licious store on a camera footage. In the video, he is referred to as 'UnCrave', someone who wants to satisfy his meat cravings on his 'no meat' days.

"UnCrave is the answer to 'meat cheat' days," shares Simeran Bhasin, business head, alternative protein, Licious.

The brand has now forayed into both animal as well as plant protein. Speaking about the launch, Bhasin says, "We are targeting meat eaters in India. In India, we have a unique segment of meat eaters. They are equally happy eating meat and vegetables."

"There are times and days when, for various reasons, some people refrain from eating meat. There are certain days when one is fasting or days when some of us avoid eating meat, like on a Tuesday or a Saturday in North India. UnCrave is designed to target meat eaters on their non-meat days."

In India, the market size of the plant-based meat category hasn’t been comprehensively mapped before. What is the scope of this category in India? What is the relevance of UnCrave in the country?

"Today, the market is relatively small and we need to grow it by creating relevance for it," mentions Bhasin.

"Around 81% of Indians consciously abstain from eating meat for one reason or the other. In India, 70% of the population are meat eaters. It is a very large segment. For people who miss meat, Licious has come up with UnCrave."

More than 50 startups are now active in the space. Over 80 companies are supporting the growth of these startups. According to an analysis report by GFI India and Deloitte India, "The domestic market size for plant-based meat in 2030 ranges from Rs 1,803 crore to Rs 5,884 crore. The export potential in 2030 ranges from Rs 2,194 crore to Rs 6,824 crore."

Talking about the challenges in this segment, Bhasin shares, "We are creating this category. We are hoping that by the time we have spent a considerable amount of effort, the consumers will see plant-based protein/meat become a household name. The single largest challenge is to actually create relevance for this category. We need to create awareness and educate people about this category."

UnCrave products are currently available in Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Bengaluru. Over the next couple of months, the brand plans to expand distribution to the top metros (where Licious is currently present). It will be launching new products every quarter.

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