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The Point of Plant-Based Meat

Executive Summary

Point 1: Plant-based meats are not designed to be “healthy”.
Point 2: Plant-based meats are not designed for vegans that so desperately miss eating chunks of animal flesh.

Now, the details…

On the radio this morning I heard a business/stock market “personality” (not sure the proper term) complain about how unhealthy plant-based meats were, how he could not pronounce most of what was in it, and mentioned how they were designed for vegans, implying that we miss meat.

Oh Good Lord he could not have been any more wrong, which is really disappointing coming from someone that allegedly knows business.

Here’s the deal folks, and I’m getting tired of having this conversation – almost as tired as answering the “where do you get your protein” from question (cue the eye roll).

(Hint: I get my protein the same place that animals get their protein – PLANTS! I just avoid the “middleman” – much more efficient that way)

Ok – back to my rant here.

Point 1: Plant-based meats are not designed to be “healthy”

The Impossible Burger, Beyond Meat, etc were not designed as a health food – please get that into your heads. You will never, ever find a doctor that prescribes a half-pound Impossible Burger every evening I promise. Meat eating folks will complain that they aren’t healthy so why bother.

That is a smokescreen and you are missing the point entirely.

So what’s the point then? Plant-based meats ARE designed for people that eat meat as a tasty alternative to a hunk of flesh from an animal that was tortured their entire life that is likely full of bacteria that will make you very sick if not cooked properly.

Ok – maybe that was a bit harsh. I’d apologize, but it’s true.

Plant-based meats are NOT a health food
Plant-based meats ARE a tasty alternative to animal meat

Simple as that, so stop hiding behind the “health” argument.

Point 2: Plant-based meats are not designed for vegans that so desperately miss eating chunks of animal flesh.

(This point blew me away that an alleged business person on the radio would comment on)

Vegans are NOT the target market for plant-based meats.
All humans ARE the target market for plant-based meats.

According to a 2018 Gallup poll, 5% of U.S. adults consider themselves to be vegetarian. (click here for source) I’m staying with vegetarian here since a) we are only talking about meat (not dairy) and b) it is a bigger number and I’m trying to be generous with my statistics.

So if you were going to buy stock in a public company, would you buy it in a company that was only targeting 5% of the US population that is selling a product that was not cheap to develop? Do you think this company would grow to a $7.39B market cap after less than 9 months if they were only targeting 5% of the US population? I’m referring to Beyond Meat here, btw – not Impossible Foods.

YOU, Mr or Mrs Carnivore, are included in the target market for this product – the other 95% of the US population.

Sure, I do enjoy the occasional Impossible or Beyond Burger, but honestly that is mostly to accommodate wherever the group I am with decides to eat. If I am blessed with that option, socially it can be easier to grab a “burger” than a salad and bowl of veggies, especially in some business settings.

But that “use case” is not enough to drive $7.39B in market cap. Nope – not even close.

I could rant for pages on this one, but I like to keep my blogs relatively short, so let me share a few relevant statistics from the World Economic Forum (link here) with you before I recap:

  • An estimated 50 billion chickens are slaughtered for food every year – a figure that excludes male chicks and unproductive hens killed in egg production.
  • Nearly 1.5 billion pigs are killed to feed the growing appetite for pork, bacon, ham and sausages – a number that has tripled in the last 50 years.
  • When it comes to seafood, the number of individual fish and shellfish is almost impossible to calculate. One hundred and fifty million tonnes of seafood were produced for human consumption in 2016 – nearly half from aquaculture (for example trout or shrimp farms) rather than caught in fisheries.
  • 300 million cattle are slaughtered for food each year

And how much water do all of these animals use?

With that, let me summarize:

Point 1
Plant-based meats are NOT designed to be “healthy”.
Plant-based meats ARE designed to be a tasty alternative to meat.

Point 2
Plant-based meats are NOT designed for vegans.
Plant-based meats ARE designed for ALL to enjoy.

Enough ranting – go eat some protein from the source – plants. And quit wasting a ridiculous amount of resources to torture and kill an animal to process that protein for you.

(See you next time on thecupajoe.com)