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Consumer curiosity fuels popularity of GMO Impossible Burger and other plant-based meats, survey shows

| | February 6, 2020
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McDonald's is working with Beyond Meat to offer a plant-based burger. Image: McDonald's
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

The top reason why consumers decided to eat plant-based meat alternatives is because they like to try new foods, according to a survey by the International Food Information Council. In the study, done [in January 2020] with 1,000 interviews of U.S. adults, 41% gave this response, while 30% said they were curious after hearing a lot about them, 27% said they were trying to eat less meat, and 27% thought it was better for the environment.

Nearly half of respondents said they had tried a plant alternative to meat. They gave several reasons they enjoyed it, but the top three were the taste (53%), meat-like texture (35%), and the fact that it tasted like meat (34%). Four out of 10 said there was nothing they didn’t like about the plant-based alternative, and 31% said they found its texture was not similar to meat.

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When comparing Nutrition Facts labels, 45% of respondents believed plant-based alternative protein was healthier than animal meat, while 25% believed the plant alternative to be unhealthier.

About a third of those who haven’t tried the products (31%) said they didn’t think the meat alternatives would taste good. A fifth had no specific reason, while the lengthy ingredients list only kept 13% from trying them.

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