Meat “If meat manufacturers don’t change, they’ll end up like Kodak”

Meat “If meat manufacturers don’t change, they’ll end up like Kodak”


Yes, the market for purely herbal products has grown rapidly. In March and April, according to market researchers from Nielsen, the demand for plant-based products in the USA shot up by 268 percent, and oat milk even rose by more than 400 percent. In contrast, the demand for meat from animals only increased by 40 percent. And German manufacturers feel the same way.

Even before the corona pandemic, herbal products left their animal alternatives behind in terms of growth rates. Many factors come together: the climate, which is noticeably changing for everyone, reports about the enormous water and land consumption for meat and milk production, about the unethical keeping of animals, but also increasing health awareness. The pandemic made the general population known for the first time about the connection between factory farming and zoonoses, i.e. animal-borne infectious diseases such as Covid-19.

No, this is not only the case in some animal markets far away. This takes place everywhere in factory farming where animals are kept in a confined space. So also with us in. The Spanish flu, for example, which killed more than 50 million people worldwide in 1918, was born in this way. It was passed on to humans through pigs. 75 percent of all new infectious diseases are of animal origin, i.e. zoonoses.

Ulrika Brandt is an expert on the plant-based food market at the international nutrition organization ProVeg, based in Berlin, which advocates plant-based nutrition.  Source: WirtschaftsWoche (M)

The production of vegetable or cultured meat alternatives is safe. The simple formula is: no meat from animals – no danger from zoonoses.

According to a current Forsa study, 55 percent of Germans want to consume less meat – in order to eat healthier, more climate-friendly and more sustainable. Animal welfare is also important to many. Part of an actual change in behavior is to say goodbye to long-established habits. And that’s basically difficult.

Absolutely. Taste is the be-all and end-all. Then comes the texture, that’s the mouthfeel. Two other important factors are natural ingredients and price. Everyone decides whether a product will be successful in the long term. There are now very good meat alternatives on the market. However, there are also products on the shelves of supermarkets that taste scary.

The market for meat alternatives will more than double in the next five years, the global market volume was estimated at 12.1 billion US dollars in 2019. It is projected to rise to nearly $ 28 billion in 2025. A striking example of the fact that the products were popular in the mainstream was provided by last year’s Academy Awards, where mainly vegan dishes were served. The actor Joaquin Phoenix, who won the Oscar for his leading role in Joker, had campaigned for this.

I do not think so. The selection was very large and varied. Roasted cauliflower toast with bittersweet shallots, golden raisins and sumac or sweet potato tempura with mint and coriander aioli, to name just two starters from the Oscar menu, are extremely tasty.

Unfortunately there are a lot of rumors and not very well-founded individual opinions in circulation. There is no scientifically based study that would confirm this. We always advise manufacturers in the food industry to use a clean label. That means using as few natural ingredients as possible. In general, the products have many advantages over meat from animals.

They have high-quality vegetable proteins, are usually less fat and also contain fewer saturated fatty acids. Cholesterol, as in meat, is not present at all. In contrast to their animal counterparts, they even have dietary fiber, which is extremely important for intestinal health. And: They are not carcinogenic.