Reading Time: 2 minutes Businessman Eric Schmidt recently ranked vegan meat as the most important trend in tech
Reading Time: 2 minutes

In July this year, Eric Schmidt, Executive Director of Alphabet (Google’s parents company), ranked artificial meat as the most important trend in tech. 

Schmidt argues that replacing livestock with artificial meat would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fight climate change.

Environment

This should not be controversial;

of global warming as well as species
extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution and habitat destruction. 

With
global meat demand predicted to increase 73 per cent by 2050 due to increasing wealth
in countries like China and India, alternative options are becoming increasingly important.

Revolution

For decades, people have
attempted to make artificial meat, but the appeal has been limited, because the
imitation has never been that convincing. 

But recently, there has been a meat
replacement food tech revolution. 

Instead of trying to take a product like tofu
and pass it off as real meat like before, companies are now working out what
makes meat taste like meat, and are then rebuilding it from the molecular level
using plants.

Results

The results have been staggering. 

, Bill Gates couldn’t tell the difference between real chicken, and Beyond
Meat’s chicken substitute. 

Beyond Meat was founded in 2009, and boast several high
profile investors including Twitter executive director Biz Stone. 

Impossible
Foods is a similar company also pioneering this new wave of meat replacement
products. 

In 2015 Impossible Foods turned down a $300 million offer by Google and in July
2016
, the company launched its first burger.

Lab meat

Lab grown meat is another type of
artificial meat. 

This technique consists of harvesting a small sample of muscle
tissue from an animal. 

Individual cells are separated and then placed into a
culture where they start dividing and growing before being layered together to
form meat patties.

It is a controversial practice among some vegans as the cells must be harvested from an animal, meaning the final product is not vegan-friendly.

, the world’s first lab
grown burger was unveiled to the world by Dr Mark Post from the University of
Maastrickt in the Netherlands. 

But it carried a tremendous price tag of $250,000.
A little over two years later, Mark Post and his team came back with a burger
being produced for a mere $11 dollars. 

Other groups doing similar work include companies
Modern Meadow, Memphis Meats and Supermeat.

By the year 2020, the meat
substitute market is

With the
urgency of the climate impact and ethical concerns of the animal agricultural
industries, there is a ground swell for meat alternatives to capture market
share and overtake the production of traditional meat.

Klaus Mitchell

Klaus launched Plant Based News in 2015 whilst studying an MSc in ‘Genetics of Human Disease' at University College London after receiving Medical Research Council funding for ‘academic excellence'. He has had a number of writing roles, including authoring an article published in the journal of Public Health Nutrition, which explored the effect of diet on different health markers. His background as a scientist underpins his data driven approach that has helped make PBN the media and health education platform that it is today. Among his day to day management and financial duties at PBN, his...