There is an opportunity to provide meat alternatives to consumers who are worried about the environmental, ethical, safety and health impact of meat consumption. While about 6%
of the UK population are strictly vegetarian, "flexitarians" who want to reduce meat, egg and dairy consumption make up about a third
of UK consumers. Another significant opportunity is that of shaping the diets of billions of future consumers from growing economies such as China, who are expected to double current meat demand.
Lab-grown, cell-cultured meat in its early stages of development is expensive and difficult to turn into an appealing product. However, there are many factors to optimise in the cellular agriculture approach, with innovations from tissue engineering already bringing products closer to consumers' plates. Another approach is the data-driven identification of new plant and insect proteins and structures, which can be extracted and processed into meat-alternatives. Early-stage companies have begun genetically engineering microorganisms like yeast to produce proteins similar to meat, dairy and egg that can be processed with age-old techniques like fermentation. There is an exciting opportunity to create new animal-free products using cells and molecules as building blocks, which would reduce meat demand.