Project ELM promotes cultured meat and alt-protein substitutes
We’re shifting how we want to advocate for a better world at Project ELM. Rather than focus on marketing eating less meat and animal products, we are integrating our campaigning efforts by promoting what one could eat more of.
There are a couple of reasons behind this decision.
First, we’ve learned from numerous interviews and campaign iterations that eating less of anything is really hard to do, even when there is a strong will to do so. This makes intuitive sense: if losing weight was as simple as “just eat less”, millions of people around the world wouldn’t be struggling with diets and weight-loss challenges. However, getting into the habit of eating more of something is a step more practicable, especially if that something tastes good. And thankfully, innovation in food tech is increasingly bringing better options to the table: Upside Foods, Believer Meats and Aleph Farms are developing cultured meat products (more on this below), while Perfect Day and Remilk are using fermentation to produce non-dairy, lactose-free milk (The EVERY Company is using the same technology to produce eggwhites without using chickens), and The Better Meat Co. offers traditional, animal-based meat enriched with meaty-flavored mycelium. Companies like Wildtype, BlueNalu, and Finless Foods are making fish and seafood products without the animals and without harming the ocean. Of course, traditional plant-based companies like Impossible, Beyond Meat, and Good Catch continue to improve their products to appeal to broader, non-vegan demographics. With such an array of delicious products in or coming to the market, it feels right to help more people discover these alternatives.
Second, we know that meat in itself isn’t inherently harmful: it’s primarily the factory-farmed production that we’re concerned about. With rapid food tech innovation, there’s a new kind of meat emerging that is healthier, more sustainable, and involves no animals. Cultured meat is the same meat we’re all used to, but produced as a form of cellular agriculture, thus skipping the process of raising, maintaining, and slaughtering an animal. It’s a lot more efficient (because you don’t have to produce a skeleton, organs, and brains - just the meat itself) and it involves no animal suffering. From an environmental standpoint, this could mean up to 45% less energy use, 99% less land (think deforestation), and 96% less water to produce the same food products.
Cultured meat can also be made to be healthier than traditional animal-grown meat with controlled fats: instead of containing heart attack-inducing fats found in traditional animal products, cultured meats can be made with healthy fats like those from avocados and walnuts. These types of meat products are better for everyone all around.
At Project ELM, we are excited to shift our focus to marketing strategies that promote better meat and animal product alternatives, rather than solely advocating for avoidance. We believe this approach is not only more palatable for consumers to adopt, but it also supports extraordinary companies that are doing great things.