Ethan Brown developed an early interest in animals and agriculture while tagging along with his Dad, a professor, farmer, and conservationist who infused his son with a deep appreciation for the natural world. As an adult, Ethan developed a promising career in the clean energy sector where he held positions of increasing leadership responsibility in the private and public sector, including eight years at Ballard Power Systems—the world’s leading PEM fuel cell company—where he reported directly to the President & CEO.
Yet Ethan was nagged by a basic question, “would we continue to raise and eat animals in such staggering numbers if a perfect plant-based replication of meat existed?” A committed vegan, he began to look far and wide for a technology that could do just that—take plant-based proteins and re-align them to mimic the mouthfeel, appearance, and overall sensory experience of animal meats. When he met Dr. Fu-hung Hsieh and Harold Huff at the University of Missouri, Ethan knew he was on to something. After several years of collaboration with the University of Missouri, The University of Maryland, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and The Obvious Corporation, Beyond Meat was born.
Ethan has an MBA from Columbia University and an MPP from the University of Maryland. He has lived and worked abroad in Bosnia and Nicaragua.
Favorite band: The Rolling Stones
Favorite sports team: Maryland Terrapins Football
Best advice for those moving to plant-based diet: Follow your heart and the rest will follow.