Protein war: Impossible Foods CEO bets on the meat industry disappearance
The meat industry will disappear within the next 15 years, considers the founder and CEO of Impossible Foods, Patrick Brown. He made the bold statement in an interview for CNBC.
"I think people are increasingly aware plant-based products are going to completely replace the animal-based products in the food world within the next 15 years. That’s our mission. That transformation is inevitable," he declared during the interview. Last year, animal protein sales in the US were worth $50 billion, while plant-based products had a market value of $760 million. Two major players are competing for the plant-based protein market share in the US and other parts of the world: Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat.
Plant-based products have increased sales this year due to disruption created in the supply chain by COVID-19 but are still far behind meat products' market share.
On the other hand, experts in the food industry are expecting a bigger disruption in the market from cultured-meat, while plant-based protein products are to play a significant role over the next 5 years or so. "I’m sure that we will have a further increase in meat substitutes. Studies show that vegan meat replacements will grow at least until 2025 but I believe in the long run cultured meat will disrupt the entire market. It will still take some time because cultured meat still needs stronger consumer and legal acceptance. But in the end, the market share for cultured meat will increase tremendously followed by organic, fresh and processed food," mentioned Lorenz Rau, Director, Anuga food trade fair in an interview for EuroMeat News.
Also, in 2019, a study released by independent think tank RethinkX predicted a dramatic fall for the meat industry over the next 10 to 15 years.
Key findings in the report are painting a dark image for the current food industry, dominated still by a classic model of farming. From an economic point of view, analysts are expecting that the cost of modern foods and other precision fermentation products to be at least 50% and as much as 80% lower than the animal products they replace and by that revenue of the US beef and dairy industry and their suppliers will decline by at least 50% by 2030, and by nearly 90% in 2035.
Ground beef products are to be hit fast and quick, with a decline in a market volume of 70% in 10 years, followed by the steak market by 30%.
"The current industrialized, animal-agriculture system will be replaced with a Food-as-Software model, where foods are engineered by scientists at a molecular level and uploaded to databases that can be accessed by food designers anywhere in the world. This will result in a far more distributed, localized, stable, and resilient food-production system. Modern foods will be cheaper and superior to animal-derived foods. The cost of modern food products will be half that of animal products and they will be superior in every functional attribute", said the report.
Last month, Brazilian pork exports increased by 50.4%, reaching 96,100 tonnes, compared with the ...