· cellbased,cultivated,Roadblocks,alternate protein,SDG


Eight Billion Reasons: A Big Week for Alternative Protein Landscape in Australia & Globally

For the first time in the planet's history, humanity has crossed a population milestone of

8 billion people.

How did you feel?

Did you have a sickening feeling in your stomach or heart?

I did!

And yet, I still remain hopeful.

Why Do I Feel Sick?

In the whole history of the planet – humanity largely remained less than a billion until the last two hundred years. And look at us now!

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In just over two hundred years, we have 'developed' so well that we are facing a planetary crisis unseen in human history thanks to human production and consumption.

But it doesn't stop at climate change.

⚠ Since 1970, according to WWF, we have lost 69% of the wildlife species.

⚠ Our natural tropical forests have been decimated for logging, cattle farming, or palm oil.

⚠ We have a plastic curse polluting our lands, rivers and oceans.

⚠ The natural fish population has been depleted so much that we rely on seafood farms for consumption.

⚠ Our public health is deteriorating. More people are dying globally because of their diet than starvation.

⚠ Chronic health issues are depleting our budgets and are projected to get larger with the ageing population.

⚠ Based on the US data, 50% of the population is likely to take medication for mental health.

Is this what we mean by 'developed'?

In the UK/US/Australia, we have lost reverence for food so much that we eat a fraction of the diversity of fruit and vegetables our grandparents used to eat.

According to a regenerative meat producer, the public eats Frankenstein chicken grown in factory farms.

But it is so cheap.

In Australia and the US, we eat close to ~100Kg of animal food/per person annually, and it's not dropping fast enough.

And the rising affluent world wants to copy our habits – including devouring so much meat and consuming just like us – thus producing more carbon, waste and destruction.

It's so tasty.

It's easier to change a man's religion than change his diet.

Margaret Mead

Sustainable Development Goals

But the world's capital is choosing to shift for the better.

The Sustainable Development Goals are about us returning to a semblance of balance.

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High meat demand & consumption creates so much destruction in so many ways. Hence, the growth of alternative or complementary proteins.

Plant-based food and alternative proteins support a minimum of Eight of the SDGs.

As we become wealthy, there's a considerable need for protein. And we are looking at many ways to create an alternative protein source.

✔ Whether it be plant-based protein?

✔ Whether it be cultivated protein?

✔ Whether it be mushroom protein?

✔ Whether it be insect protein?

✔ Or whether it be air protein? Yes, this is a real thing!

It's all welcome!

Food & Climate Change Pavillion was present at #Cop27 for the very first time. However, even there, discussing meat reduction was still taboo.

What's The BIG News This Week?

1 – Australia's first R&D Alt Protein Conference was held this week with Alt Protein CRC.

2 – Australian Vow Raises US $49M for Series A funding Round

3 – US FDA approval for cultivated meat for Upside meat

R&D Alt Protein Conference

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Sydney University and Intermedia held the R&D Alternative Protein Event for the first time in the Australian landscape.

A rich education environment set the scene for beautiful day of learning.

No matter how fast one company can grow or raise funds, it takes an ecosystem to develop the alternative protein landscape.
Kristy, from Harvest B, made the point that Silicon Valley's tech start-up scene was only possible thanks to the collaboration with Stanford University.

With over 100 attendees, from the food ecosystem, government departments, industry bodies, and businesses, the audience appreciated the vast landscape and the many challenges in growing the new sector in Australia.

Food Standards ANZ gave us more insight about their approach to approve novel foods.

The audience became aware of the Alt Proteins Cooperative Research Cooperation initiative supporting the ecosystem's growth, where univrsities, industry and government collaborate.

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We also met intermediaries and industry champions like Dean (Good Food Institute ANZ), Sam Perkins ( CEO of Cellular Agriculture Australia) and Susie O Neill (Food Frontier)

It was nice to re-connect with John Menzies from Sanitarium – one of the pioneering plant-based champions in Australia and @Sonja Kukuljan from Noumi and hear about the challenges of formulating precision fermentation for milk and cheese.


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Diem from Coco & Luca provided a range of delicious plant-based foods, from pepperoni Pizza to Fish & Chips and Spaghetti Bolognese. The guests loved it!

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2 – Australian Vow Raises US $49M for Series A funding Round

The second big news is that Vow, the leading Australian cultivated meat producer, raised AU $73.5m in their Series A round.

Vow plans to launch a quail product in Singapore soon with the brand Morsel.


This Series A fundraiser follows facilities opening in Sydney, where the NSW Treasurer, Matt Kean, opened the facilities and was the first Australian politician to taste the product. It's the largest cultivated meat facility in the southern hemisphere.

According to Vow CEO George Peppou - "By inventing new meats that are tastier, more nutritious and serve functions traditional meats can't, we can have an enormous impact. We're thrilled to be toe to toe with the best companies in this space, moving

at speed to reach huge milestones with a fraction of the capital of other companies."

3 – US FDA approval for cultivated meat for Upside meat

The US Food and Drugs Administration has approved Upside Food cultivated meat for human consumption.

This is a BIG deal.

Globally, Upside, formerly Memphis Meats, is a pioneering company for cultivated meats.

Singapore and Israel have already approved cultivated meat for human consumption. The US approval is a much bigger deal and will set a precedent for other nations to follow.

In Conclusion

With 8 billion of us, we need to urgently change our diets and consumption to create a more sustainable world. We also need to change how we do business and invest.

The Sustainable Development Goals are providing supporting frameworks to guide investment decisions and business.

From the public side, greater awareness of the planetary crisis and the natural disasters are making more people aware of our fragile planet.

As a result, conscious consumers vote with their wallets to choose brands that stand for something.

And yet, diet change is so hard!

More money is needed to be invested in R&D to create better solutions for us and the planet.

As crucial as R&D is for creating tastier products, we need the support of governments, institutions and retailers to 'nudge' people's ingrained behaviour to more sustainable consumption.

Away from meat, we are seeing a shift from petrol cars to EV and hydrogen cars. Similarly, the circular economy is also growing.

There is hope!

The existing vested interests will create roadblocks at every chance.

It will be challenging.

When we show the #livelihoods we are creating are far better for humanity and the planet versus the 'jobs' in the destructive industries, we can accelerate the shift.

I have faith in the human spirit of the majority to galvanise the best and brightest to bring about the change towards alternative proteins sooner rather than later.

Let's be more 'Greedy... for Good!'