• 02-MAY-2019

Hej meatball lovers: IKEA is working on a new meatball made from plant based alternative protein

Plant based alternative protein meatball

One of the most well-known IKEA icons is the Swedish meatball, traditionally served with cream sauce, mashed potatoes and lingonberry jam. IKEA is working on the development of a new meatball that looks and tastes like meat but is made from plant based alternative proteins.

The food industry is facing many challenges and often they are closely connected to sustainability. Research shows that to feed growing population 70% more food will be needed until 2050 and that currently existing protein production cannot meet that demand.*

IKEA has the ambition to serve the new plant based meatball in all of its restaurants globally. In the development process IKEA is collaborating with some of the leading suppliers within the industry doing the first tests and tastings of the plant based alternative protein meatball.

 “It is a really exciting industry! Looking at the quality of the products that we have been tasting I am looking forward to serve a delicious plant based meatball made from alternative protein at IKEA. I hope that the many meatball lovers out there will like it as well” says Michael La Cour Managing Director at IKEA Food Services AB.

For 35 years the many IKEA visitors have enjoyed iconic Swedish meatballs at the IKEA restaurants. The new alternative protein meatball will be the fifth member of the IKEA meatball family. Already in 2015 IKEA added both veggie balls and chicken balls to the range and in 2018 the salmon and cod ball was introduced.

“We know that the IKEA meatballs are loved by the many people and for years the meatballs have been the most popular dish in our restaurants” La Cour says. “We see a growing demand from our customers to have access to more sustainable food options and we want to meet that need. Our ambition is to make healthier and more sustainable eating easy, desirable and affordable without compromising on taste and texture.” La Cour continues.

The first customer facing tests of the new plant based meatball is planned for early next year. Some IKEA markets are already serving local dishes with a plant based alternative protein as an ingredient.

*UN food and agriculture organization, FAO.org