Leonardo DiCaprio is getting into the vegan meat business

Fighting climate change from Hollywood.
Fighting climate change from Hollywood.
Image: AP Photo/STRMX2
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Leonardo DiCaprio, who won an Academy Award for his 2015 portrayal of a man nearly eaten by a grizzly bear, is investing in a plant-based, vegan burger company.

The CEO of Los Angeles-based Beyond Meat this week (Oct. 17) announced that DiCaprio had added the company to the list of groups that receive his financial support as part of the actor’s bigger initiative to curb climate change.

“Livestock production is a major contributor to carbon emissions,” DiCaprio said in a statement. “Shifting from animal meat to the plant-based meats…is one of the most powerful measures someone can take to reduce their impact on our climate.”

The size of DiCaprio’s financial stake in the company has not been made public.

The announcement is just latest investment DiCaprio has made in this space. The actor’s foundation, which focuses mostly on environmental issues, last month said it was awarding $20 million in grants to more than 100 organizations, including the Lion Recovery Fund, the Global Partnership for Sharks and Rays, and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

An investment from a celebrity not only raises Beyond Meat’s profile; it’s an added feather in the company’s hat after a banner year. Over the summer, Beyond Meat expanded its footprint in the US grocery market, getting its plant-based burger in the meat department of over 600 Kroger-owned stores across 15 states. It’s also sold at Whole Foods Market locations, where early signs suggest it’s a popular item.