Plant-based proteins taking over the meat industry

Plant-based proteins taking over the meat industry

Plant-based Proteins in the United States

Plant-based meat products are revolutionizing today’s economy and food production companies. Companies like Trader Joe’s, TGI Fridays, Dunkin Doughnuts, KFC, and even Burger King are starting to introduce new plant-based proteins into their menus. 

Benefits

There are many environmental and personal benefits to the increased production and consumption of plant-based proteins. Scientists say that increasing plant-based protein consumption will decrease our carbon footprint, conserve water, save plant and animal habitats, result in cleaner hair, and help our overall environmental sustainability. Producing plant-based proteins will help reduce water pollution from feedlot runoff. 87% of freshwater use in the United States goes into livestock production, increasing plant-based proteins would then decrease the number of animals needed to be grown, thus decreasing water use in the United States. Raising livestock uses close to one-third of the land in the world, resulting in deforestation. Growing plants takes less space to grow the same amount of protein you can get from the raising of the same amount of traditional protein. 300 million tons of manure are produced every year by livestock. This waste is responsible for producing ammonia, the most potent form of nitrogen, that kills fish, causes algae blooms, and contributes to smog. Additionally, the air surrounding factory farms often contains above-average levels of hydrogen sulfide, particulate matter, endotoxins, and most importantly carbon dioxide, and methane.

Drawbacks

There are some negative effects of the exclusive consumption of plant-based proteins. Plant-based proteins contain fewer amino acids, which are necessary for the production of proteins in compounds that play critical roles in your body. Plant-based proteins are a relatively new product, so scientists are still studying the potential effects of these proteins. 

Stats

The plant-based protein market was estimated to account for a value of USD 18.5 billion in 2019 and estimated to reach a value of USD 40.6 billion by 2025. Approximately 6% of the US population is estimated to eat strictly plant-based proteins, and the number is continuously rising. 

Impossible burger

Burger King has now introduced a new plant-based burger called the ‘Impossible Whopper.’ The ‘Impossible Whopper’ is a new vegan alternative to the traditional burger. Burger King introduced this burger in 7,200 locations for the first time. Burger King’s chief marketing officer, Fernando Machado, said that in the company’s testing so far, customers and even employees had not been able to tell the difference between the old meaty Whopper and the new one.

 

KFC and plant-based proteins

Sponsored by ‘Beyond Meats’ famous fast food restaurant Kentucky Fried Chicken will begin to offer a plant-based alternative to traditional fried chicken. The product is 80 calories per piece and looks a bit like a fried chicken nugget, with a sinewy texture designed to feel like chicken. It will be available next month in dozens of stores in and around Nashville, Tennessee, and Charlotte, North Carolina, the companies said. Los Angeles-based ‘Beyond Meat,’ is valued at about $5 billion.

 

Sites

https://www.onegreenplanet.org/environment/how-eating-more-plant-based-foods-benefits-the-environment/ 

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41398-019-0552-0

https://www.marketsandmarkets.com/Market-Reports/plant-based-protein-market-14715651.html 

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/01/technology/burger-king-impossible-whopper.html 

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-beyond-meat-kfc/kfc-to-sell-beyond-meats-plant-based-fried-chicken-in-the-southern-u-s-idUSKBN1ZS2GE