Plant-based food producer Meatless Farm has partnered with Real Madrid to target meat-eaters with a global campaign raising awareness of sustainable eating.
The football club's sustainability credentials will be highlighted and players will be featured across a variety of content. The campaign will also tap into Real Madrid's 330 million social media fans across nine channels.
Ferry Kamp, global marketing director at Meatless Farm, told Campaign: "This is not a sponsorship about football, winning free tickets and getting some free jerseys. It's always about communicating our mission and changing the dialogue."
Real Madrid's nutritionists will be working with Meatless Farm to show how plant-based food can work within a performance-based diet, and the club's players will be sharing their experiences of reducing meat and increasing plant-based foods. Recipes will be shared to encourage fans to try a plant-based dish on match days.
Meatless Farm's mission is to reduce the world's dependency on intensively farmed meat and create a more sustainable food ecosystem that reinstates biodiversity. With vegans and vegetarians often the minority of the population, its marketing targets the larger consumer base of meat-eaters who are open to eating less meat.
Kamp added: "At Meatless Farm we always develop communications and campaigns that attract a broader audience and reach out to more consumers than just the vegans and vegetarians. And that has worked really well for us. We've had some more bold, disruptive campaigns that grab people's attention.
"We're one of the fastest-growing brands within plant-based meat in the UK. Three-quarters of our sales come from new consumers and that's very important in order to succeed in our mission."
It is estimated that 60% of Meatless Farm's communications in the next 12 months will be generated by this partnership, although it will vary in different territories. In the UK it will be working with British cyclist Mark Cavendish – in February it was announced that Cavendish will be filming his plant-based journey.
The brand, launched in the UK in 2018, has expanded worldwide, now operating in 24 different countries including Germany, Spain and Portugal.
An integrated summer campaign will be revealed in June employing TV, experiential, social media and PR.
"We have our own in-house creative team called Seeds. That's where all creativity starts at Meatless Farm," Kamp said.
He added: "We really believe that the brand and creativity should sit at the heart of the company. So it's not a separate department or an external agency but it's at the heart of everything we do."