Market & Trends

“Meat Replacements are Going to Disrupt the $1,000 Billion Conventional Meat Industry”

A report published by consulting firm ATKearney titled, “How Will Cultured Meat and Meat Alternatives Disrupt the Agricultural and Food Industry?” compares the success of cultured meat companies to that of Google, Apple and Tesla, and concludes that “cultured meat and new meat replacement products are going to disrupt the $1,000 billion conventional meat industry with all its supplier companies.”

According to the report, based on information from experts in cultured meat and the meat replacement industry, meat replacements will be more relevant in the transition phase (until 2030), whereas cultured meat will be more prevalent after the transition phase and will “outgrow novel vegan meat replacements between 2025 and 2040 due to technological advancements and consumer preferences.”

meat alternatives graphic

The report compares fast moving and world-famous startups in the market to the media hype of silicone valley companies in previous decades: “Within a few years, the emerging market and technology leaders in the field of novel vegan and cultured meat replacement have become an integral part of prestigious start-up spots such as California, Israel, and the Netherlands. These start-ups already exert an attraction and glamour on young top graduates in their countries, similar to that expected from Google, Tesla, or Apple.”

In terms of other vegan innovations arriving on the market, the report mentions several companies which produce plant-based and cultured seafood, leather, silk, egg white, milk, gelatin, and horn. “As the structures of cultured milk, egg white, gelatin, and leather are not as complex as meat, these products might hit the market even earlier than cultured meat.”


Other key points in the report include the following:

•”Through 2018, the worldwide funding of novel vegan meat replacement companies reached $900 million […] Furthermore, meat replacement start-ups receive great financial and media support by large corporations, governments, and celebrities, including Richard Branson, Sergey Brin, and Bill Gates.

•”The meat market will grow at a low rate in the coming decades as global population growth takes place mostly in locations with low meat consumption such as India and African countries.

•”The consumer and legal acceptance of cultured meat will be a global phenomenon. This hypothesis is backed by several surveys in India, China, and the US as well as the global development toward “non-slaughtered” and resource-efficient products.

•”Based on A.T. Kearney analysis, around one-third of the global meat supply will be provided by these new technologies within the next 10 years (see figure 9). It is noteworthy that the demand for conventional meat declines by 3 percent despite a global increase in meat consumption of 3 percent per year.”

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