#18 - Alternative Foods
Global meat consumption is expected to increase 88% by 2050. Dairy consumption will likely increase about 30-40%.
These changes will increase greenhouse gas emissions by more than 130% and require extra pastureland the size of India to feed livestock.
Alternative meats, plant-based dairy and grown seafoods cut land usage, pollution and eliminate the harm done to animals.
Plant-based meat = Meat products made from (typically) soy and pea proteins, meant to taste like meat and marketed to carnivores.
Cultured/grown meat = Meat made from real animal cells, but grown in a food production plant. First approval for sales (chicken bites) in Singapore in late 2020. More approvals due in 2021-2023.
Plant-based dairy = Vegan milk-like beverages or cheese analogues.
Start supplying pre-prepared meals with alternative proteins. This area is clearly underdeveloped and a market white space, but still worth $377 million and has grown over 25% over the past two years.
Focus on the untapped niches. Plant-based eggs sales were only $10m in 2019 but the category is one the fastest-growing: 192% in dollar sales growth.
Create supplementary plant-based products such as condiments and dressings.
Eggs & Dairy
People are slowly starting to accept alternative proteins to their diet. 2020 saw a 264% increase of plant-based meat consumption in a 9-week period in the U.S.
However, current total consumption of alternative proteins is still only around 1% in the U.S. markets.
The total alt protein market is poised to reach $290 billion in 2035.
Plant-based companies are up against the economies of scale and heavy subsidies offered for the meat industry.
The automation of future grown meat production can have far-reaching implications for job markets. Meat production is one of the largest employers in agriculture.
A lot of alternative protein companies got funded in 2020. During the first quarter a total of $741 million was raised. Halfway into the year the sum was already $1.5 billion. The year ended in a total of $2.53 billion. The alternative food space is red hot right now.
Beyond Meat, one of the first companies to enter the space, made +$400 million of revenue in 2020 but at a net loss of $52.8 million. We're still early in the game and big names struggle to be profitable due to investments.
KFC is dabbling with bioprinted chicken in its Russian restaurants.
Urbanization, population growth and the growing middle class will drive the growth in demand of meat and meat-like products.
Leveraging existing meat supply chains will be crucial for the success of planted-based companies.
We will see more ingredients for proteins: sunflower, potato, rice, fungi and more.
The Rise of Meatless Meat, Explained - 101 of meat alternatives - how they taste like, health considerations and ways to reduce meat consumption.
Overview of Cultured Meat Startups - Info on founding year, location, focus, product pricing, prototypes and piloting.
Alternative, non-animal based foods are making their way into our diets, albeit slowly. Biggest drawbacks are still price issues, consumer skepticism and lack of sales permissions for cultivated meat.
However, one can still expect these products to go into mainstream during this decade.
Thanks for reading. See you next week!