Recently, Ryan Xue, Secretary-General of the CPBFA; Dr. Zhang Bo Secretary-General of the Plant-Based Meat Subcommittee and Dr. Li Jian from CPBFA expert committee, were interviewed by the media.
今年全球刮起了“人造肉”旋风，5月2日Beyond Meat，在纳斯达克挂牌，首日股价暴涨163%，市值达39亿美元。随后植物肉公司Impossible Foods也宣布了3亿美元新轮融资，估值达20亿美元。这两家公司都受到了来自比尔盖茨的青睐，莱昂纳多迪卡普里奥和前麦当劳CEO唐汤普森也都加入了“人造肉”大军。
The booming of “Plant-Based Meat”, Beyond Meat listed in Nasdaq on May 2nd, the first day of the stock price jumped 163%, the market value at $3.9 billion. Impossible Foods, a plant based meat company, subsequently announced a new round of financing of $300 million, valued at $2 billion. Both companies are favored by Bill Gates, and Leonardo DiCaprio and former McDonald's CEO Don Thompson have joined the "Plant-Based Meat" business.
In China, where vegan food and soybean products have been popular for thousands of years, but what is the industry of " Plant-Based Meat " like in China? Before answering this question, let's first understand what " Plant-Based Meat " is. What's the difference between PBM and animal meat?
What is “Cultured Meat?” (Reporter asked)
“At present, the concept of "Cultured Meat" includes two aspects, one is plant based meat, and the other is animal cell culture meat. Cell meat is the same as animal meat in texture. At present, large-scale production costs are high. The focus of research and development in China is mainly plant based meats. PBM combines more comprehensive nutrition. Its nutrients and proteins come from plant extracts, which are more natural and healthy.” Ryan Xue from China Plant Based Foods Alliance said.
Why " Cultured Meat "?(Reporter asked)
"The global population will reach 10 billion by 2050. If we depend on meat according to the current consumption pattern, we will need three earths by 2050 to meet the needs of the population. So this is unsustainable. If we look at the true costs of pork along, 40% of the world's soybeans are used as feed, also requires large amount of water and land resources, and 1.5 billion tons of carbon emissions have been generated, if you taking all of these into consideration, this is no doubt a unsustainable business model. We need to find a better, alternative and efficient solution.” Ryan Xue from China Plant Based Foods Alliance said.
“To solve the food crisis and climate change, it is impossible for Asia not to participate. We have such a great tradition already, but all we need to do is to modernize it now.” David Yang from Green Monday said.
“对消费者来说，如果你不告诉他现在是吃一个“未来肉”的汉堡，而只是跟他说你尝尝汉堡或是尝尝小笼包，说实在的，他们真的分不出来。” Green Monday创始人杨大伟说。
Does plant-based meat taste like real meat? (Reporter asked)
"For consumers, if you don't tell them that they're eating a future meat hamburger, but just tell them that you're eating a hamburger or a small steamed bun, they really can't tell it apart." David Yang from Green Monday said.
“Impossible Foods 这家公司，有个非常核心的技术，该公司通过研究牛肉味道中的分子结构，发现了大豆根部有一种类似的分子结构，通过重组蛋白的方式把它制作出来，成为“大豆血红蛋白”，此血红蛋白赋予了这块植物肉的牛肉的味道”。中国植物性食品产业联盟，薛岩秘书长说。
“Impossible Foods has a very core technology. By studying the molecular structure of beef flavor, Impossible Meat has found a similar molecular structure in the root of soybean. It is made into soybean hemoglobin though fermentation. This hemoglobin gives PBM the flavor of the real meat.” Ryan Xue from China Plant Based Foods Alliance said.
"Plant Based Meat" should have a certain texture structure, but also a certain degree of hardness and elasticity. From the texture control point of view, it belongs to the science of physical chemistry. What we hope to achieve is to replica the texture of beef, chicken, fish and so on. The ultimate goal for texture control is to perfectly mimic the tenderness of targeted meat. ”Dr. Zhang Bo from Institute of Food Science and Technology CAAS; Plant-Based Meat Subcommittee CPBFA.
"In terms of plant based meat flavor, we choose the same components as animal amino acids and some carbohydrates, and make use of the conditions of reaction to make the plant based meat taste real. It is not simply adding flavors, but by means of molecular simulation to achieve the flavor of plant based meat." Dr. Li Jian from Beijing Technology and Business University; Expert from CPBFA.
Can Plant-Based Meat provide adequate nutrition? (Reporter asked)
"At first, we may pay more attention to the taste and slowly restore the nutrients in plant based meat." Ryan Xue from China Plant Based Foods Alliance said.
“如果讲我们植物猪肉的话，脂肪低了70%，卡路里低60%，胆固醇是零，蛋白质是跟猪肉一样的，铁和钙甚至比真猪肉要高两倍三倍。” Green Monday创始人杨大伟说。
"Compare with real pork, our plant-based pork, is 70% less fat, 60% less calories, zero cholesterol has the same amount of protein, iron and calcium are even three times higher than real pork." David Yang from Green Monday said.
Can“Cultured Meat”replace real meat in the future? (Reporter asked)
"It's too early to talk about replacing traditional meat with plant based meat or animal cell meat, but I think" Cultured Meat "is a healthy, efficient, environmental friendly choice and potentially a good solution to population growth.”Ryan Xue from China Plant Based Foods Alliance said.
“我相信绝大部份人应该都说，如果能够支持环保，如果能够爱护动物，如果对自己身体又好的话，其实是想不到一个理由说不的。” Green Monday创始人杨大伟说。
"I believe most people should say that if they can support environmental protection, if they love animals, if they are good for their health, there is no reason to say no." David Yang from Green Monday said.
Attention to environmental protection and consideration of their health have contributed to the booming of plant-based meat. China as the largest consumer marketplace for food and beverages, is increasingly appealing for global plant-based meat brands. Local Chinese food startups are also developing their own plant-based meat products that meet the Chinese fast evolving consumer’s taste.