The PlantEurope Network hosted a compelling and insightful panel discussion focusing on plant-based and cultivated protein. In an era where sustainability and environmental consciousness are paramount, the discussion and presentations aimed to explore innovative solutions and initiatives shaping the future of protein production.
Guest speakers Dr. Marco Springmann (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), Anne Bordier (World Resources Institute), Maria Cermeño (Poseidona), Julia Martin (ProVeg International) and David Hunt (Good Food Institute Europe) were up to the challenge and shared interesting insights into their current work as well as an outlook on the future of protein production.
The discussion highlighted the evident flaws in the current food system, which fails to support both human and planetary health. However, there are available solutions that, if implemented, can keep the food system within planetary boundaries. The key lies in obtaining support from dietary guidelines, governments, policymakers, and incentivized consumers to drive behavioral change.
Anne Bordier emphasized three main levers for improvement: shifting to a plant-rich diet, enhancing agricultural practices, and scaling alternate proteins. Implementing behavioral science into the public sector can play a crucial role in reshaping public perspectives and influencing shopping behaviors. Maria Cermeño introduced a fascinating new technology involving concentrated algal protein, while Julia Martin and David Hunt discussed cultivated meat as a viable alternative gaining consumer acceptance. The challenge now is to focus on taste, nutrition, convenience, and accessibility, and to scale these alternatives rapidly enough to address the current nature and climate crisis. Despite the challenges, the speakers leave us with hope for positive change.
The PlantEurope team would like to thank all speakers and our moderator, Dr. Shireen Kassam from Plant-Based Health Professionals UK.