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Lol! Fake Meat Companies Failing Because They Are Too Much Like Meat

Note: This article may contain commentary or the author's opinion.

You literally can’t please some people. Vegans and vegetarians were clamoring for meat substitutes for years, and companies started popping up offering alternatives to pork, beef, and chicken. Predictably most of the products tasted awful, had weird, chewy consistencies, and were hard to cook with. As always, technology progressed, and some of the products actually started to taste good. Apparently too good, because the stock prices of the biggest fake meat companies have plummeted, and the Washington Post suggests the reason is they taste too much like real meat! No, for real! You just can’t please those fussy vegetarians! Chew on this.

Plant-based meat sales took a nose dive in 2022 because consumers simply cannot stomach the product’s overwhelmingly meat-like characteristics, experts cited by the Washington Post suggest.

After a brief boon at the zenith of the pandemic, the two mainstays of plant-based meat, Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, are now struggling to stay alive. Stock prices bit the big one for Beyond Meat in 2022, and Impossible hit its workers with two rounds of layoffs, the outlet also reported.

Meat alternatives’ Achilles’ heel is attributed to their alleged success at making the product look, feel, taste, smell, and act just like animal meat. Unfortunately, consumers who are drawn to plant-based meats are apparently no longer as keen on products that convincingly “bleed” as they were initially.

Let’s be clear, animals are delicious. No amount of weird chemicals or seasoning is going to make fake meat taste like real meat. Apparently, it is too close to call for some folks. What is often overlooked is the health issue. People automatically assume fake meat is better for them because it isn’t from a long-lashed bovine or Wilbur the pig. That assumption is often wrong. Meat substitutes, even when plant based are highly processed and full of chemicals. Plants don’t taste like meat, so how do you think they get the burger to taste sort of like a burger? It isn’t magic, unless you count the magic of science and chemistry. Yummy!

Love it or hate it, the irony of plant-based meats’ failure hinging on achieving its goal to be virtually identical to meat is impossible to ignore.

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The irony is delicious, even if the fake sausage isn’t so much. Looks like vegan and vegetarian consumers are so delicate even a fake-bleeding piece of meat made from tree bark or whatever they use is too much for their delicate sensibilities. It is also hard to replace animal protein. While green, leafy vegetables provide some, animal protein is vital to building muscle and energy. We simply were made to eat meat AND plants, hence the combination teeth. Bossie and Arnold Ziffle better keep their heads on a swivel. Real meat isn’t dead, fake meat is, and now I’m hungry.