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

| | September 10, 2019
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Image: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

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”).

Related article:  Meet the 'flavorists': Food chemists who make plant-based Beyond, Impossible burgers taste like 'meat'

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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