Nine Naphat under fire after promoting CP’s plant-based meat products

Thai TV star Naphat “Nine” Siangsomboon has drawn criticism for promoting Charoen Pokphand (CP) Group’s plant-based meat products as an alternative to soaring pork prices.

Nine, best known for his starring in Netflix’s rom-com Friend Zone movie, posted on social media this week encouraging people to consume plant-based meat products from the MEAT ZERO brand of the country’s leading food conglomerate CPF as pork prices rise.

“Try plant-based protein instead,” Nine said. “It’s delicious, healthy, and worry-free”

Netizens reacted furiously by arguing that the plant-based meat product is more expensive and that now is not the time to capitalize on people’s misery. Pork prices in Thailand have risen sharply due to supply shortages caused by the outbreak of African Swine Fever (ASF).

“How can they be cheaper than pork?” wondered one Twitter user.

After facing criticism, Nine deleted his Facebook post but kept one on Instagram, while turning off the comment session.

Nine appeared as a main presenter of the MEAT ZERO brand when it launched in May last year. CPF aims to become the top alternative meat brand in Asia by 2022 and the world’s top three by 2026, according to a statement.

The plant-based protein food “is as tasty as real meat” and “is priced relatively close to real meat,” it said. 

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