Feb 24, 2020 - Economy & Business

Agriculture giant Cargill to roll out plant-based meat products

A Cargill meat processing plant in Springdale, Arizona. Photo: Spencer Tirey/Getty Images

Agriculture giant Cargill will begin producing plant-based patties and ground "fake meat" products in April, the company announced Monday.

Why it matters: Cargill, one of the largest privately held companies in the U.S., presents new competition for startups Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods alongside meat giant Tyson Foods, which is rolling out its own plant-based products, Axios' Rashaan Ayesh reports.

What they're saying: "Cargill has a strong history of providing high-quality protein products to customers," Elizabeth Gutschenritter, managing director of Cargill’s alternative protein team, said.

  • "Producing plant-based products across our global supply chain is the logical next step to expanding our ability to meet consumer needs and bring new value to this category."

The big picture: Investment firm UBS projects that the market for plant-based protein and meat alternative products will increase from $4.6 billion in 2018 to $85 billion in 2030.

Go deeper: The next frontier for plant-based meat

Go deeper

Plant-based meats maker Impossible Foods raises $500 million in new funding

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Impossible Foods, a Redwood City, California-based maker of plant-based protein products, raised $500 million in Series F funding led by Mirae Asset Global Investments.

Why it matters: This massive round closed last week. Not only is that notable in our new abnormal, confirming what we heard last week about venture capital willingness to cut checks, but it also should help Impossible handle short-term business disruptions.

The environmental impact of Fluffy and Rover

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The 163 million dogs and cats in the U.S. ate one-quarter of the 94.3 billion pounds of meat the country produced in 2015, or as much as 62 million Americans did, according to estimates by UCLA professor Gregory Okin.

Why it matters: Raising that meat generated greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 64 million tons of carbon dioxide, or as much as the yearly emissions of 12.3 million passenger vehicles. U.S. pet ownership has increased since 2015 when the pet census was taken and Okin made his calculations. As the number of pets has increased, so have emissions.

Forgotten factory workers urge plant shutdowns as coronavirus spreads

Ford factory employees work in close proximity, touching many of the same surfaces. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Pressure is building on automakers to halt U.S. production as hourly employees grow more anxious about their risk of exposure to the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Factory workers can't work from home, and on a vehicle assembly line, they work in close proximity, touching the same surfaces and sharing tools many times a day. Manufacturing workers in other industries face similar issues.