Why this plant-based beef is a world first
Queensland celebrity chef and pioneer of plant-based products Alejandro Cancino is set to launch the world's first carbon-neutral vegan beef.
The former fine dining chef and owner of Fenn Foods, which produces the hugely popular vegan beef substitute Veef, has committed to offsetting all carbon emissions produced during the making of a new 500g pea-protein-based meat, which he plans to sell through supermarkets.
"I'm sure it's going to cost us a fair bit of money to start, but then it will push us to improve our methods, improve where we source the ingredients, what we do with packaging, it's kind of forcing ourselves to do something," Mr Cancino said.
The vegan meat industry has recorded exponential growth in recent years, with the global market now worth nearly $15 billion.
However, it has come under criticism for using imported ingredients, which generate carbon emissions when flying them abroad, and for the emissions created in the factories producing it.
Mr Cancino said he hoped by going carbon neutral he would encourage other vegan meat manufacturers to do the same, helping to reduce any environmental impact.
"This is a no-brainer," he said.
'The same way people are looking for health-star ratings, people in the future will be looking into the (environmental) impact (of their foods)."
The Sunshine Coast based business currently sources around two-thirds of its ingredients from Australia and will be looking to increase this, as well as adding solar panels to their factory.
"Ideally in the future, hopefully within the next five years, we'd like the company to be completely carbon neutral," Mr Cancino said.