Meat Substitute Market: Challenges and Opportunities

Chicago, 2019-Nov-18 — /EPR Network/ —

The meat substitutes market is projected to grow from USD 4.6 billion in 2018 to USD 6.4 billion by 2023, recording a CAGR of 6.8% during the forecast period. This is attributed to the growing health concerns among consumers and increasing preference for vegan food due to their various health benefits. Furthermore, rising obesity levels due to the consumption of meat and meat products have led to an increasing consumer preference for meat substitutes.

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How are technological innovations in “Tissue engineering” creating growth opportunities for manufacturers in the meat substitute market?

The rising health awareness among consumers and the health benefits of meat substitutes have led to its demand. Technological advancements in the meat industry have thus offered potential for the overall market. For instance, cultured meat refers to manufacturing meat via “tissue engineering,” where “starter cells” are taken from animals and put in a culture media to grow independently. It is also known as victimless meat, lab-grown meat, tubesteak, cruelty-free meat, shmeat, test-tube meat, and in-vitro meat.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the current meat production methods would not be enough to meet the demand, as it is projected to increase by more than two-thirds in the next 40 years, and by then, meat is likely to become a luxury item, along with staple food, due to the growing population. Thus, cultured meat could be a good alternative for meat. Moreover, animals consume energy, which is used in metabolism and cellular respiration. These energy losses are considerably reduced in a cultured meat producing process, thereby contributing to the growth of the meat substitutes market.

Other technologies include using extrusion and shear cell technology, wherein meat substitutes can be produced to duplicate the texture and appearance of meat products. Moreover, flavor manufacturers offer reaction flavors, such as roast meat, meat stock, and cured meats, due to which the emphasis is shifting to natural or nature-identical ingredients.

Why is the difference in texture and flavor of meat substitutes posing challenges for the growth of the meat substitute?

Meat substitutes contain nutritional benefits similar to that of meat. Manufacturers try to make the meat substitutes similar to meat in terms of texture, color, flavor, and taste. However, most consumers are disappointed by the taste and variety of meat substitutes. Consumers have a perception that there is a significant compromise in taste if they opt for meat substitutes. For instance, the off-flavor of soy protein makes it undesirable for consumption. The off-flavor is caused by compounds, such as aldehydes, ketones, furans, and alcohols. Medium-chain aldehydes are among the major reasons for the beany and grassy taste of soy products. However, the high nutritional value of soy has led to its demand.

Moreover, consumers believe that meat substitutes are either too gummy or too chewy. This has led meat substitute manufacturers to offer innovative products, such as increase in the density of flesh, mainly the soy protein and wheat gluten, to improve the texture of their meat substitutes, to closely mimic the chewiness of meat.

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The Asia Pacific is projected to be the fastest-growing region in the meat substitutes market during the forecast period.

The Asia Pacific is projected to be the fastest-growing region in the meat substitutes market during the forecast period due to the increasing focus on agricultural practices and requirement of high-quality agricultural produce. Furthermore, the support from government and other organizations for manufacturing meat substitute products is projected to drive the growth of this market. Additionally, the growing preference for organically grown food products among consumers and diversified food habits of people in this region are factors that are projected to drive the market growth for meat substitutes.

Major vendors in the meat substitutes market include ADM (US), DowDuPont (US), The Nisshin OilliO Group (Japan), Sonic Biochem Limited (India), MGP Ingredients (US), Garden Protein International (Canada), Beyond Meat (US), Amys Kitchen (US), Quorn Foods (UK), MorningStar Farms (US), Meatless (Netherlands), and VBites (UK).

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