Vegan meat revolution could save the planet - GulfToday

Vegan meat revolution could save the planet

Burger 1

Plant-based burgers are much more popular in parts of Europe.

A few years back, meat-free “meat” was nothing more than a distant dream for many consumers. Plant-based burgers were few and far between in major fast-food outlets – and meaty they were not.

But realistic alternatives to environmentally damaging meat are now big business – and global fast-food chains are finally starting to take notice.

Burger King has announced that after a hugely successful trial, it will roll out its partnership with plant-based meat company Impossible Foods across the US. McDonalds recently introduced the similarly meaty Big Vegan TS in its outlets in Germany, one of its five largest international markets.

Now finally able to produce meat-free imitations that are for many indistinguishable from their beefy counterparts, the rapidly growing industry appears set to make serious waves in the once impregnable bastions of cheap meat.

Thanks to rising interest in food technology from Silicon Valley’s start-up scene, such indistinguishable vegan meat came on the menu a little over five years ago.

It may surprise you to know that plant-based alternatives are much more popular in parts of Europe.

If news of out-of-reach vegan burgers is giving you food envy, there is no need to worry. Different cultures, tastes, prices and administrative hurdles mean that developments will not happen everywhere at the same time. But in the next couple of years, expect to see a lot more plant-based meat coming to fast-food chains near you.

These tight regulations also stipulate that genetically modified ingredients have to be labelled, which may explain why the widely heralded Impossible Burger – which uses genetically modified yeast to produce the blood-like plant protein that tastes so much like beef – has not yet landed in European countries.

The Independent