What happened

Shares of Beyond Meat (BYND -2.35%) popped today as news broke that the plant-based meat company would begin selling its products in Brazil, the world's third-largest beef market behind the EU and U.S., according to Reuters.

The stock was up 4.9% as of 2:56 p.m. EDT.

A selection of Beyond Meat products

Image source: Beyond Meat.

So what

The wire service said that Beyond Meat would begin selling its plant-based burgers and sausages in 19 high-end Sao Paolo stores belonging to Brazilian supermarket chain St. Marche. The launch comes just two weeks after Beyond Meat partnered with Alibaba to bring its products to China in Alibaba's Freshippo markets.

The international market holds a lot of promise for Beyond Meat as its potential customer base is theoretically almost everyone in the world. International sales made up only about a quarter of its revenue in Q1, so there is room for growth. And the company has only just begun selling its products in international supermarkets, as the bulk of its focus overseas has on been on restaurants. With restaurants struggling because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Beyond Meat has redoubled its attention to the retail channel. 

Now what

Investors should pay attention to Beyond Meat's performance in the famously carnivorous country as success there would bolster the company's use case as a meat alternative rather than just another option for vegetarians.

Though restaurant closures may present a setback to the innovative food producer, it remains one of the fastest-growing companies on the market, with revenue up 141% in the most recent quarter. Second-quarter results, which are expected by the end of the month, are likely to be diminished by the pandemic, and analysts see revenue growth slowing to 47% when the company reports earnings. The good news for Beyond Meat bulls is that that target could prove to be a low bar for the company to hop over.