The future of meat is not meat says Bill Gates

When you think of food innovation, Bill Gates may not be the first person that springs to mind. As the founder of Microsoft, a company that disrupted the way we all work, rest and play, he may have some insights into what the future of food may be.

In a post on technology blog Mashable, Gates said that with a global population heading toward 9 billion, we are going to run out of land for raising livestock sooner or later.
 

Gates is bullish on the ability of technology, and three companies in particular to defeat the current reliance on meat as we know it.

“what makes them really interesting is their taste. Food scientists are now creating meat alternatives that truly taste like — and have the same “mouth feel” — as their nature-made counterparts.” wrote Gates.

“Flavor and texture have been the biggest hurdles for most people in adopting meat alternatives. But companies like Beyond Meat, Hampton Creek Foods and Lyrical are doing some amazing things.”

Beyond Meat makes chicken alternatives which Gates claims he could not discern from regular chicken.

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There is also Hampton Creek, which makes an egg alternative which “does away with the high cholesterol content of real eggs.”

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Non dairy cheese maker Lyrical gets acclaim for its low fat non0-dairy cheese, as does Nu-Tek for its effort to reduce sodium intake by using potassium chloride, without making it taste awful.

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Culture clash?

Using technology to solve the worlds food problems might be a tantalising prospect, especially for someone like Gates who lives, breathes and (apparently) eats disruptive technology.But will the public accept these “fake foods”?

Whilst vegans and vegetarians may jump at the chance to get cheese, meat and eggs without any of the ethical concerns, mainstream food marketing has had a strong emphasis on natural for some years. Although the use of the word natural may be dropping, https://www.foodmag.com.au/news/food-labelling-trends-moving-away-from-natural-cla these are being replaced with more specific terms like GM Free and additive- or preservative-free.

So where does this leave food producers? Is there a movement towards natural, untouched food, or will the public be willing to accept meat, egg and cheese analogues?


Only time will tell.

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