Consumers largely prefer ‘real’ beef, despite plant-based burger’s surging popularity, survey shows

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Image: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

With all the news about Beyond Meat’s stock price and the rolling out of the Impossible Burger at Burger King, there has been a lot of speculation about how consumers might response and about the ultimate size of this market. In a new paper with Ellen Van Loo and Vincenzina Caputo, I’m pleased to bring some hard data to these debates.

[Editor’s note: Jayson Lusk is an agricultural economist at Purdue University.]

What did we do? We surveyed about 1,800 U.S. food consumers earlier this year and asked them to make a number of simulated shopping choices. In each choice, consumers had five options: conventional farm-raised beef, a plant-based burger made with pea protein (i.e., Beyond Meat), a plant-based burger made with animal-like protein (i.e., Impossible Foods), labgrown meat (i.e., Memphis meats), or they could choose not to buy any of the products (i.e., “none”).

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So, what did we find? Here is the abstract:

Results …. indicate that, holding prices constant and conditional on choosing a food product, 72% chose farm raised beef, 16% plant-based (pea protein) meat alternative, 7% plant-based (animal-like protein) meat alternative, and 5% labgrown meat. Adding brand names (Certified Angus Beef, Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods, and Memphis Meats) actually increased the share choosing farm raised beef to 80%.

Read full, original article: CONSUMER PREFERENCES FOR LABGROWN AND PLANT-BASED MEAT

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