COVID-19's impacts on meat are opening the door for alternative proteins

April 28, 2020
Emerging Ecosystems in Agrifood and Health More...
by Sara Olson
Very important

African swine fever (ASF) had already decimated Asian swine herds before COVID-19 came along to put further strain on Asia's meat supply, and the rest of the world's meat industries are in serious danger of being unable to maintain status quo production. Agricultural challenges in commodity crop production and processing will be slower to percolate into the food chain, meaning plant-based burgers and chicken alternatives have a window of opportunity right now to present themselves as more reliable alternatives – or potentially the only choice – next to empty meat cases in grocery stores. Only products in retail today will benefit immediately, but longer-term, expect more people to shift to "flexitarian" approaches to protein consumption.

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