Here Comes The Forest-saving Burger Made With Mushroom Proteins
Its use in the diet would halve deforestation and CO2 emissions.
The forest-saving burger is on its way: its meat is fermented from proteins of microbes such as mushrooms, and if it replaced some of the beef consumed it would halve the deforestation caused by the enlargement of farms and the associated CO2 emissions. This was stated by a study led by the German Institute for Research on Climate Impact in Potsdam and published in the journal Nature, which thus turns the spotlight on a third type of meat substitute, alongside that of vegetable origin and that grown in the laboratory. The researchers led by Florian Humpenöder carried out a computer simulation by introducing the variable of meat made with microbial proteins and observing the environmental effects produced on the entire agri-food system. The simulation envisages a scenario up to 2050 that takes into account future population growth, the increase in food demand, the evolution of food patterns, as well as the dynamics in land use and agriculture.
“We found that if we replaced 20% of per capita beef by 2050 — explains Humpenöder — annual deforestation and CO2 emissions due to land use change would be halved compared to a normal scenario”.
Microbial proteins obtained by fermentation are already on the market in a wide variety of supermarkets, for example in the UK and Switzerland and the Food and Drug Administration (Fda), the US government body that deals with the regulation of food products. and pharmaceuticals, has already given the green light for a microbial meat substitute in 2002.
“The good news is that people need not to be afraid of not being able to eat meat in the future”, comments Humpenöder: “we will continue to consume hamburgers, they will be only produced in a different way “.