In the movement towards a more humane and sustainable protein, chefs are emerging as key players and leaders.

A recent survey by German food and beverage-focused GEA Group, which canvassed 1,000 chefs from Europe, Asia, and North and South America, revealed that a whopping 92% of respondents were familiar with plant-based foods and beverages, with over half of them (63%) considering themselves experts in the field. 

And that’s not all – even though cultivated meat is only available in Singapore at the moment, 80% of chefs polled said they were already familiar with it. It’s clear that chefs around the world are staying ahead of the curve and preparing to embrace alternative protein sources with open arms (and open kitchens). 

Chefs Are Driving the Alt Protein Shift

Not only are chefs knowledgeable about alternative protein, but they are also endorsing the sector within their own businesses. In fact, a staggering 90% of chefs are already using meat and dairy alternatives to some extent in their daily work, with over a third using them to a high degree. And it’s not just plant-based options – seafood and egg alternatives are also gaining popularity, with 30% of chefs already incorporating them into their menus.

What’s driving this change? Customers are increasingly seeking out alternative options for health and environmental reasons. The survey found that nearly 90% of respondents are seeing increased demand for alternative proteins among their customers, with over 40% reporting a high degree of increased demand. And it’s not just about taste – 79% of respondents believe that their customers are motivated by environmental concerns, while 74% see health reasons as a motivating factor. 

But it’s not just about meeting demand – chefs are also taking responsibility for their own impact on the planet. The survey found that they are taking a personal stake in the issue as well, with one-third reducing the amount of meat they consume and 15% identifying as plant-based. It’s clear that chefs are stepping up to drive the transition to a more sustainable protein.


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