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India Set to Be Epicenter for Vegan Meat and Dairy Development

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According to a cross-country survey conducted by Good Food Institute and the University of Bath in 2019, over 60% of Indians want to purchase plant-based meat regularly.

CHARLOTTE POINTING: India is well known for its vegetarian and flexitarian attitude towards diet. Could there be significant potential for vegan meat and dairy development in the country? The Good Food Institute (GFI), a nonprofit which promotes sustainable alternatives to animal agriculture, thinks so…

Nearly 80 percent of people who live in India practice Hinduism; the religion doesn’t require meat-free living, but vegetarianism is viewed as “highly meritorious,” according to the Hindu American Foundation.

But in the last few years, the demand for meat in India has risen. A 2014 study revealed that 71 percent of Indians over the age of 15 are not vegetarian. Deshpande noted that many Indian consumers are now flexitarian or “guilty non-vegetarians” by default.

According to a cross-country survey conducted by GFI and the University of Bath in 2019, over 60 percent of Indians want to purchase plant-based meat regularly. “A rising middle-class, increased awareness of global trends, and the need for protein transitions for human and planetary health, and deep-seated cultural views on meat consumption within India’s diverse population make plant-based foods ideally placed to cut across sociocultural divides,” explained Deshpande…

According to Deshpande, GFI can help India become one of the first countries in the world to use food technology to avoid the burdens of conventional animal agriculture completely. To do so, it will need to work with the government and private industry.

But it’s important that plant-based protein development doesn’t just focus on being healthier and more environmentally-friendly than its animal-based counterpart. It needs to compete on taste, price, and convenience too. Ultimately it’s these factors that will drive consumers to buy, believes Deshpande. SOURCE…

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