From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
FounderYves Potvin
ProductsAnimal meat-free foods
OwnerConagra Brands
Pinnacle Foods
WebsiteGardein official website

Gardein (a portmanteau of garden and protein) is a line of meat-free foods produced by Conagra Brands. In 2003, the company was founded by Yves Potvin, who remains the CEO of Gardein as of 2021.[1] In November 2014, Pinnacle Foods purchased Gardein for $154 million.[2][3] Pinnacle was acquired by Conagra in 2018.[4]

The company has production facilities in Richmond, British Columbia and Hagerstown, Maryland.[5] All of Gardein's products are vegan. The company uses a proprietary process to make its meatless products. In 2014, the company began producing gluten free meatless products.[6]

Gardein Crispy Tenders[7]
Gardein pocket meals in 2015


Garden Protein International was founded by former chef Yves Potvin in 2003.[8] In 2009, the company began selling its frozen products.[9]

In 2007, Garden Protein had 85 employees and $50 million in annual sales.[10] In 2014, it had nearly $100 million in sales at the retail level.[11] By 2015, it had over 250 employees with distribution to more than 22,000 stores in North America.[12]

Gardein was first used in the United Kingdom in 2008, as an ingredient in Grassington's frozen meals.[13]


Gardein products have been featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show multiple times by chef and Gardein consultant Tal Ronnen.[14][15]

In 2013, Gardein partnered with the Los Angeles City Council to celebrate Meatless Monday.[16][17]


In 2007, Gardein received PETA's Company of the Year Award for their meat substitute products.[10]

Since 2010 Gardein has received four Canadian Grand Prix New Product awards[18] (Frozen or Refrigerated Prepared Food & Entrees, 2013,[19] Fishless Fillet and Crispy Chik'n with Veggies Pocket Meal, 2015[20]). It also won a New Product award from Veg News Magazine three years in a row (2010, 2011 and 2012).[21] Gardein's Seven Grain Crispy Tenders product won Shape magazine's Best Snack award in 2010, and Gardein then won the Good Food Award by Natural Health Magazine in 2011.[7]

Gardein received several awards in 2014, including PETA's Product of the Year, the Libby Award for PETA's 'Best Seasonal Vegan Food,' the 'Foodie Award' by the Vegetarian Times, and the National Restaurant Association's Food and Beverage Innovations (FABI) Awards for their Fishless Fillets.[22][23][24][25]

Also that year, the brand received the Leadership in Sustainability award at the British Columbia Export Awards,[26] and Mercy for Animals awarded founder Yves Potvin their Innovative Business Award.[27]

Better Homes and Gardens awarded Gardein with Best New Product in the Meatless Alternative category for their Crispy Chick'n Sliders in 2014,[28] and 'Best New Product' in 2015.[29]

In 2015, Gardein's Gluten-Free Beefless Ground was a finalist for Best Meat Replacement in Delicious Living Magazine's third annual Best Bite Awards. In the same year, they received the Progressive Grocer Category Advisor Award (Frozen Meatless Foods category) for their Fishless Fillets.[30]

Restaurant menu inclusion[edit]

Although Gardein is primarily sold as a frozen product in grocery stores, its products have been included on restaurant menus as well.

  • Many of the faux meat options available at Veggie Grill restaurants are made from Gardein products.[31]
  • In 2017, hamburger chain Johnny Rockets added the Gardein black bean patty to its menu.[32]
  • In August 2019, New Zealand based burger chain BurgerFuel added the Chick’n patties to its menu.[33]
  • Starting in 2011, the Yard House restaurant chain has offered several Gardein products on its menu.[34]

Controversies and criticisms[edit]

In February 2018, Gardein pleaded guilty in the Provincial Court of British Columbia to a 2016 offence of unlawfully dumping vegetable oil into a ditch on Gardein's property, which leads into the Fraser River. The company was fined $285,000, ordered to improve its Richmond-based plant to prevent future spills, and added to the Environmental Offenders Registry.[35]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Best, Dean (1 May 2015). "just the answer: Gardein founder and CEO Yves Potvin". Just-Food.
  2. ^ "Pinnacle Foods acquires maker of Gardein vegan food line for $154M". NJBiz. November 14, 2014. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  3. ^ Pinnacle Foods to buy Canadian protein foods maker Garden. Reuters, 14 November 2014
  4. ^ "Conagra Brands Completes Acquisition Of Pinnacle Foods | Conagra Brands". Retrieved 2019-11-12.
  5. ^ Bednar, Adam. "Pinnacle coming to Hagerstown – Maryland Daily Record". Retrieved 2017-09-09.
  6. ^ Abdulla, Hannah (14 February 2014). "Meat alternatives firm Gardein adds gluten-free to range". Just-Food.
  7. ^ a b "Low-Calorie Snacks|Shape Magazine". 2011-08-26. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  8. ^ "Yves Potvin on rapid growth". The Globe and Mail. 21 October 2008.
  9. ^ Hudson, Sabrina (28 April 2014). "Fish-free filets angle for sales: Gardein looks to hook more than just vegans with meatless product". Los Angeles Business Journal. 36 (17): 3 – via Factiva.
  10. ^ a b Anderson, Fiona (27 December 2007). "Meatless meat wins animal rights award; Veggie-based chicken and beef look-alikes are created by Richmond's Garden Protein". p. C4.
  11. ^ Hsu, Tiffany (2014-07-20). "How I Made It: Yves Potvin". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2017-09-09.
  12. ^ Miller, Nancy (March 2015). "Where's the beef?". Los Angeles Magazine. 60 (3): 104–108 – via Factiva.
  13. ^ Beckett, Alex; Riley, Lisa (13 September 2008). "New vegetarian launches to capitalise on UN claims". The Grocer. p. 33.
  14. ^ Butler, Grant (7 September 2010). "Chef puts the protein on vegan plates". The Oregonian (MCT).
  15. ^ Shore, Randy (1 February 2011). "Richmond-based firm braces for another wave of Oprah-fuelled growth". Postmedia News.
  16. ^ Gardein. "Los Angeles City Council Commends Gardein for its Support of Meatless Monday". Retrieved 2017-09-09.
  17. ^ "L.A. City Council Salutes Gardein for Its Support of Meatless Monday". Health & Beauty Close-Up. 17 December 2012.
  18. ^ "Gardein Earns "Three-Peat" with Coveted Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards™". 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  19. ^ "Grocery Industry Honours Rookies of the Year". Canada NewsWire. 7 June 2013.
  20. ^ "Gardein Honored at Canadian Grand Prix New Product Awards for Fifth Consecutive Year". India Retail News. 11 June 2015.
  21. ^ "The 2012 Veggie Awards". 2012-12-03. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  22. ^ "NRA reveals 2014 FABI Award picks". Restaurant Hospitality. 12 March 2014.
  23. ^ "2014 Foodie Awards: Market to Table". Vegetarian Times. 2014. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  24. ^ "Gardein's 'Golden Fishless Filet' Is PETA's 'Product of the Year". PETA. December 17, 2014. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  25. ^ "2014 Libby Awards". peta2. 2014. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  26. ^ "Gardein™ Receives Award for Leadership in Sustainability at the British Columbia Export Awards". Business Wire. November 18, 2014. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  27. ^ "Innovative Business Award". 2014. Archived from the original on February 22, 2015. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  28. ^ "Better Homes and Gardens Highlights Best New Product Awards 2014 Winners". Entertainment Close-Up. 27 January 2014.
  29. ^ "Winner – Gardein Golden Fishless Filets!". February 2, 2015. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  30. ^ Gardein. "Gardein™ Receives Progressive Grocer's 2015 Category Advisor Award". Retrieved 2017-09-09.
  31. ^ "Restaurant spotlight | veggie grill". Gardein. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  32. ^ "Johnny Rockets Adds Vegan Burger to its Menu". 31 July 2017. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  33. ^ "BurgerFuel's Latest Special Vegan Burger, Chook Free!". BurgerFuel. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  34. ^ "The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog". Retrieved 2021-12-19.
  35. ^ Canada, Environment and Climate Change (20 February 2018). "British Columbia manufacturer of plant-based foods fined for Fisheries Act violation -". Retrieved 2018-02-22.

External links[edit]