Meati Foods Names New CFO, Touts Experience Balancing Sustainability, Financials

Feb. 5, 2024
Phil Graves, former exec from Wild Idea Buffalo Co., Bass Pro Shops and Patagonia, joins the mushroom-based "meat" producer.

Cultivated protein processor Meati Foods has appointed Phil Graves to be its new chief financial officer, effective immediately. Graves will oversee the capital expenditures the company says are needed for continued omnichannel expansion. Meati will also lean on Graves’ experience helping deliver positive environmental and social impact alongside profit, the release from the company stated.

Graves joins Meati after serving two years as CEO of meat processor Wild Idea Buffalo Co. Prior to that, he had been chief sustainability officer and foundation president at Bass Pro Shops, and vice president of corporate development at Patagonia, among other positions.

Tyler Huggins, CEO and co-founder of Meati Foods, said the move builds on a “tremendous inaugural year establishing MushroomRoot as a new, profoundly nutritious and sustainable protein,” and that Graves can contribute to the success of the company right away. Graves pointed out his experience at Wild Idea taught him that prioritizing sustainable practices didn’t automatically mean gloom and doom for the company’s financial bottom line.

He joins Meati in the midst of a year of significant growth and expansion of the product line’s distribution to more than 3,600 retail locations nationwide, including Whole Foods Market, Meijer, Cub Foods, Sprouts Farmers Market, The Giant Co., and a host of other grocery stores.

In addition, a year ago, Meati opened its “Mega Ranch” processing facility in Thornton, Colo., and in October 2023, the company received a patent on the MushroomRoot base composition of matter containing Neurospora crassa.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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