A report recently compiled by IDTechEx forecasting plant-based and cultured meat growth for 2020 – 2030, has outlined the need for meat alternatives as the human population outgrows the sustainability of current animal farming.
The report predicts that the human population could reach 10 billion by the year 2050 and also that meat sales are not declining, despite the rise in veganism and the current global reaction to climate change; the recent surge in investments and production of plant-based meat alternatives is not enough to make the change needed for human food to be sustainable.
Cellular agriculture, or ‘cultured meat’, has the potential to produce meat products identical to those produced through animal slaughter, far more efficiently and at a fraction of the environmental cost. It also offers more appeal to the many who will not give up meat.
Cultured meat startups have raised over $125 million since 2015 and investment grew by 85% between 2017 and 2018. Pioneering Dutch start-up Mosa Meats claims that a single cell sample can create up to 10,000 kg of cultured meat, with the production process requiring 99% less land and 96% less water than traditional livestock agriculture.
IDTechEx states that both industries still have a long way to go before they can threaten the global meat industry. Despite rapid growth, plant-based meat still has less than 1% market share of the US meat industry.