Plant-based and cell-cultured meat, milk, and egg producers aim to replace industrial food production with animal-free fare that tastes better, costs less, and requires a fraction of the energy inputs. These products are no longer relegated to niche markets for ethical vegetarians, but are heavily funded by private investors betting on meat without animals as mass-market, environmentally feasible alternatives that can be scaled for a growing global population.
The Future of Meat Without Animals examines conceptual and cultural opportunities, entanglements, and pitfalls in moving global meat, egg, and dairy consumption toward these animal-free options. Beyond surface tensions of "meatless meat" and "animal-free flesh", deeper conflicts proliferate around naturalized accounts of human identity and meat consumption, as well as the linkage of protein with colonial power and gender oppression. What visions and technologies can disrupt modern agriculture? What economic and marketing channels are required to scale these products? What beings and ecosystems remain implicated in a livestock-free food system?
A future of meat without animals invites adjustments on the plate, but it also inspires renewed habits of mind as well as life-affirming innovations capable of nourishing the contours of our future selves. The Future of Meat Without Animals illuminates material and philosophical complexities that will shape the character of our future of food.
List of Figures and Tables
Introduction, Brianne Donaldson
Part I: Our Past Cannot Meat the Future
Beyond Meat, Ethan Brown
1. Towards 2050: The Projected Costs and Possible Alternatives to Industrial Livestock Production, Brian G. Henning
2. An Ethical Consumer Capitalism, Steven McMullen
3. The "Vegetable Basket Project": Tracking the Increase of Meat Production and Consumption in China Since the 1980s, Song Tian, with Yao Wang and Mo Zhao. Translated by Yuan Gao
4. The Rise of Non-Veg: Meat and Egg Consumption and Production in Contemporary India, Ana Bajzelj and Shivani Bothra
5. Seeing Meat Without Animals: Attitudes for the Future, Adam Wolpa
Part II: Nourishing Innovations
Miyoko's Kitchen: Artisan Vegan Cheese, Miyoko Schinner
6. Meat Without Flesh, Michael Marder
7. The Future of Animals, The Future of Food: Two Organizations Working to Change Public Attitudes and Appetites, Jaya Bhumitra and Bruce Friedrich
8. New Harvest: Building the Cellular Agriculture Economy, Isha Datar, Gilonne d'Origny, and Erin Kim
9. Beyond Happy Meat: The (im)Possibilities of "Humane," "Local" and "Compassionate" Meat, Vasile Stanescu
10. The Future of Industrial Agriculture: An Environmental Justice Perspective, Joseph A. Tuminello
11. Exploiting Fantasy: Overconformity in Animal Agriculture, Meatless Meat, and Animal Ethics, Brianne Donaldson
Part III. Matters of Taste
Hampton Creek-Dear You, Josh Tetrick
12. Eating Prometheus' Liver: Geoengineered Meat from 1875 to the Present, Michael Anderson
13. Vegan Soul: Moving Beyond (animal) Meat In Black Communities, Christopher Carter
14. The Sexual Politics of Meatless Meat: (in)Edible Others and The Myth of Flesh Without Sacrifice, Rebekah Sinclair
15. Ethical Spectacles and Seitan-Making: Beyond the Sexual Politics of Meat-A Response to Sinclair, Carol J. Adams
16. Making Meaning Without Meat: A How-to Guide, Aaron Gross
17. Altermobilities: Animals, Mobility, and the Future of Meat, Matthew Calarco
18. Epilogue, Christopher Carter
Appendix A: A (non-exhaustive) List of Plant-Based and Cultured Meat Food Producers, Funders, and Innovation, Saadullah Bashir
Appendix B: Strategies for Plant-Based Food Producers
Brianne Donaldson is a farmed animal advocate and Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Monmouth College. Christopher Carter is Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of San Diego in the Theology and Religious Studies Department. His research focuses on black and womanist theological ethics, environmental ethics, and animals and religion
"Are we on the edge of a future without meat from animals? For the past 45 years, I've been waiting for that future. It's not here yet, but this collection of diverse essays gives reason to hope that – despite the major obstacles still standing in the way – it is not far away."
– Peter Singer, author of Animal Liberation
"The Future of Meat Without Animals raises vital questions at a moment poised between a harmful and unsustainable industrial animal agriculture and growing interest in plant-based and cultured alternatives to meat, milk, eggs, and cheese. It provides consumers, activists, and scholars with critical resources and innovative ways of thinking about animals, agriculture, meat, and meaning while calling for the essential deindustrialization of our multispecies relationships."
– Brett Mizelle, Professor of History, California State University, Long Beach
"How did we end up in this mess? What changes are needed to combat the looming threat of ecocide, induced by animal agriculture? And what are the challenges and potential downfalls that might accompany attempts to implement these changes? These are the questions that a diverse array of independent scholars, animal advocacy workers, CEOs and employees of plant-based and cellular-cultured food companies, and academics ask and attempt to answer in The Future of Meat without Animals. [...] This book is one that both academics from various disciplines and food producers will appreciate; it offers something of value for everyone who hopes for a future without animal exploitation and agriculture-induced environmental devastation."
– Environmental Ethics, Vol. 39, no. 3, 2017