Jan 11, 2020

The next frontier for plant-based meat

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

After conquering the plant-based burger, fake meat startups are focusing on perfecting other meat alternatives.

Driving the news: Impossible Foods is now out with Impossible Pork. The company distributed samples at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, and tasters said it closely mimicked real pork, Vox reports.

  • If plant-based pork takes off, it could turn into a windfall for fake meat companies. Pork is the most popular meat, accounting for 36% of the world's meat consumption, per Vox.
  • Fake pork could also be meat alternative companies' ticket to the lucrative Chinese market, where pork is especially popular but prices are soaring due to African swine fever and a trade-war-induced shortage of soybeans (feed for pigs).

Go deeper: U.S. fake meat industry vies for China market

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Kitchen matches: Plant-based meats fire up fast-food traffic and sales

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The fast-food industry has fallen in love with plant-based "meats" and the boost in foot traffic and sales they provide from more health- and climate-conscious consumers.

Why it matters: The public’s growing interest in plant-based "meat" has start-ups trying to scale up and expand their market share, and food giants, such as Tyson Foods, are trying to muscle—and cash—in. The plant-based meat industry has seen $12.6 billion in sales and $4.5 billion in revenue as of July 2019, according to the Plant Based Food Association, and such non-meat burgers were estimated to be in 7,200 Burger Kings, 1,000 Carl's Jrs., and hundreds of other fast-food joints at the close of 2019.

Go deeperArrowJan 25, 2020

Fake meat may have some real problems

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Beyond Meat's stock price fell by 4.3% on Wednesday after Canadian fast food giant Tim Hortons announced it was pulling Beyond burgers from its menu.

Why it matters: Beyond Meat was one of 2019's biggest success stories — at its peak the stock rose 840% from its IPO price.

Go deeperArrowJan 30, 2020

23% of Americans say they cut back on meat in 2019

Heirloom tomatoes in Denver, Colo., in 2019. Photo: Robert Alexander/Getty Images

A Gallup survey found that 23% of 2,431 adults reported eating less meat in the past year than they had in 2018, while the vast majority (72%) say they ate the same amount of meat.

Why it matters: A meat-intensive diet can increase a person's chances of developing certain illnesses like heart disease and require more resources to produce compared to a vegetable-based diet.

Go deeperArrowJan 27, 2020