Animal Production Science Animal Production Science Society
Food, fibre and pharmaceuticals from animals
REVIEW

Artificial meat and the future of the meat industry

Sarah P. F. Bonny A , Graham E. Gardner B , David W. Pethick B and Jean-François Hocquette C D E
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, the University of Adelaide, North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia.

B School of Veterinary and Life Sciences, Murdoch University, 90 South Street, Murdoch, WA 6150, Australia.

C INRA, UMR1213, Recherches sur les Herbivores, F-63122 Saint Genès Champanelle, France.

D Clermont Université, VetAgro Sup, UMR1213, Recherches sur les Herbivores, F-63122 Saint Genès Champanelle, France.

E Corresponding author. Email: jean-francois.hocquette@clermont.inra.fr

Animal Production Science 57(11) 2216-2223 https://doi.org/10.1071/AN17307
Submitted: 11 May 2017  Accepted: 2 August 2017   Published: 19 September 2017

Abstract

The global population is estimated to plateau at 9 billion by the year 2050; however, projected food-production estimates would supply for only 8 billion people, using the ‘business as usual’ approach. In particular, the meat industry would need to increase production by ~50–73%. In response, there are several different options that have the potential to satisfy demand and increase production. Some of these options require advanced technologies and many may be considered as ‘artificial’ by different consumer groups. Within the meat industry itself, available technologies include selective breeding, agroecology systems, animal cloning and genetic modification. Alternatively, meat proteins can be replaced or substituted with proteins from plants, fungi, algae or insects. Finally, meat products could be produced using in vitro culturing and three-dimensional printing techniques. The protein produced by these techniques can be considered in the following three categories: modified livestock systems, synthetic meat systems, and meat substitutes. In the future, it is likely that meat substitutes will increase market share through competition with low-grade cuts of meat, sausages, ground meat and processed meat. However, synthetic meat systems and meat substitutes have significant barriers to commercialisation and widespread adoption that will affect their presence at least in the high-end premium sector in the market. To meet growing demands for protein, and in the face of growing competition from other sectors, the conventional meat industry must adopt new technologies and farming systems. These must be tailored to the challenges facing the industry and must effectively respond to consumer demands and the changing market place.

Additional keywords: cultured meat, in vitro meat, meat substitutes.


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