What happened

Beyond Meat (BYND -0.17%) shareholders outperformed a declining market last month. Shares jumped 43% in January compared to a 1% drop in the S&P 500, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

That increase added to significant gains for the plant-based meat alternative producer, which beat the market by a wide margin in 2020.

A woman shops in the meat department of a supermarket.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Investors were thrilled to learn that Beyond Meat has struck a partnership with PepsiCo (PEP 3.62%) that seems sure to lift demand for its products. The deal took the form of a joint venture rather than a buyout or equity investment. Financial terms weren't disclosed, either, making the scale hard to judge.

But it's easy to see how linking up with a leading snack and food marketer and distributor could help Beyond Meat establish itself in more retailing locations. The two consumer companies will "leverage Beyond Meat’s leading technology in plant-based protein development and PepsiCo’s world-class marketing and commercial capabilities to create and scale new snack and beverage options," the press release said.

Now what

Investors might get a few more details on the partnership when Pepsi announces its fourth-quarter earnings results on Feb. 11. Yet it seems likely that the joint venture is just the first step in a growing partnership between PepsiCo and Beyond Meat.