The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has recently published a bioethics briefing note on meat alternatives.
The briefing note examines the ethical issues raised by developments in creating meat alternatives, including their implications for health, the environment and animal welfare, and their potential role in the broader food system. There is growing interest and investment in meat alternatives that attempt to imitate meat, with plant-based products already available and cultured meat in development.
The briefing note highlights that more evidence is needed to determine if meat alternatives really are more sustainable and healthier than conventional meat in the long-term. It emphasises that meat alternatives are just one approach for trying to reduce the impact of intensive livestock farming, and should be considered alongside other potential solutions for achieving food sustainability.
They suggest that there should be accurate and transparent labelling and marketing practices, including information about processes involved in the manufacture of meat alternatives and details about the sustainability of the ingredients used.