Home Blog 2018 What is the definition of meat? It’s consumer defined.
Jun 18, 2018

If Consumers Call It Meat, It’s Meat

Subscribe to our blog

Last week NPD’s Food Group sent out a news release on the double-digit growth of plant-based protein consumption in- and away-from-home. The release prompted a call from a reporter who was writing about the debate surrounding the formal definitions of “meat” and “milk” in light of the increasing number of meat and milk alternatives in the marketplace.

Farmers see the alternative foods, which are primarily plant-based, as a threat and they want the federal government to restrict words like meat, milk, and cheese to products that come from animals. The federal government said that “in light of marketplace trends and the latest nutritional sciences” it is considering formally defining the terms.  Some of the concern is that consumers will be confused and will think the alternative foods are the same as animal-based meat or milk.  I think we need to give today’s hyper-informed consumer a little more credit.

The debate about what constitutes “meat” or “milk” misses the main point. It’s all about protein!  Sixty percent of Americans tell us they seek more protein in their diet so we shouldn’t be surprised that they are embracing more sources of protein in all forms.  Rather than worry about what we call it, the opportunity on both the plant and animal side of the equation is to understand the occasions and motivations that are driving protein demand and position their products as a solution to consumers’ quest for more protein.

Upcoming Event

The NGA Show

Presentation Title: Competing with Dollar Stores
Presenter: David Portalatin, Vice President, Food Industry Advisor
Date: Sunday, February 23, 2020: 3:00 PM - 3:25 PM
Location: San Diego Convention Center
Description: Dollar stores will continue to be a formidable competitor especially as they improve their commitment to fresh foods. We’ll review strengths, weakness and future competitive plans for this format and provide tactics to compete effectively.

Register Now

Stay current in your industry

Related Blog Posts

Tagged: Foodservice

Understanding the Post-Millennial Consumer
Understanding the Post-Millennial Consumer

We are at an interesting crossroads when it comes to understanding the commercial foodservice consumer in Canada. For years, the Millennials have dominated much of the conversation and the Boomers have dominated much of the spending; however, as we begin this new decade, it’s becoming clear that a major generational shift is upon us.

What to Expect from the Canadian Foodservice Industry in Q1
What to Expect from the Canadian Foodservice Industry in Q1

What can we expect from the Canadian foodservice in the first quarter of the year? Get the Q1 2020 foodservice outlook on traffic, dealing, delivery and more.

Five Eating Out Trends to Watch in 2020
Five Eating Out Trends to Watch in 2020

NPD’s UK Foodservice team identified key trends that will likely reshape Britain’s £57 billion out-of-home foodservice industry in 2020, with the need for increased sustainability from foodservice operators being a clear theme

Food and Beverage Trends to Watch in 2020
Food and Beverage Trends to Watch in 2020

In 2020, NPD Food Analyst, Darren Seifer, predicts tailwinds behind the plant-based food movement, food as medicine, the morning meal focus, and sustainability.


Subscribe and get key market trends and insights relevant to your industry each month.

We will not sell your information. View privacy notice.

Follow Us

© 2020 The NPD Group, Inc.