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“Raising crops to feed animals so we can eat animals is vastly inefficient.”
7.5 billion people currently share this spinning blue planet we call Earth. By 2050, that number will escalate to 9.7 billion. By 2100? 11 billion.
How can we possibly feed 11 billion people sustainably?
To answer that question we must turn our gaze to the industrialization of animal agriculture. On the surface, what we commonly call factory farming appears incredibly efficient, creating massive economies of scale to feed the maximum number of people possible.
But in actuality, this industry is inexcusably inefficient and unsustainable long-term. It requires untold amounts of land, water and feed. It contributes more greenhouse gas emissions that the entire transportation combined. It’s depleting our soil. It’s polluting our water table. It’s acidifying our oceans. It’s making us sick. And it’s driving the greatest mass species extinction in the history of mankind. In fact, 60% of all animal species have been rendered extinct in just the last 50 years.
We can’t continue down this path. We desperately need a better way.
So let’s talk about it. This week I sit down for a second conversation with Bruce Friedrich, a leading innovator in food systems and policy.
Bruce is the executive director of The Good Food Institute and founding partner of New Crop Capital, organizations focused on replacing animal products with plant and culture-based alternatives. He graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown Law and Phi Beta Kappa from Grinnell College, holds additional degrees from Johns Hopkins University and the London School of Economics and was inducted into the United States Animal Rights Hall of Fame in 2004.
A popular speaker on college campuses — including Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and MIT — Bruce has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, and Court TV.
Picking up where we left off in April 2017 (RRP 286), Bruce brings us up to speed on the rapidly evolving frontier of food technology and plant-based innovation, including a fascinating deep dive into the cutting edge of clean meat and the revolutionary science that is making possible the production of animal foods by way of cultured cells harvested without slaughter.
This is a conversation about the politics of agriculture and the subsidies, corporations, representatives and lobbyists that support it.
Bust mostly, this is about current advances designed to improve food systems in the interest of human, animal and planetary well-being.
Humanity currently faces an unprecedented, seemingly insurmountable environmental crisis. But Bruce casts an optimistic forecast — how technology, urgency and popular demand are rapidly converging to create healthy, sustainable and compassionate solutions to help solve our current food, health and environmental dilemmas.
Chock-a-block with incredible information, this exchange will leave you not only better informed on the aforementioned subjects, but inspired to invest more deeply in where your food comes from, how it impacts the precious world we share and how together we can forge the future of food for ourselves and generations to come.
Incredibly intelligent, considerate and measured, it was an honor to sit down with Bruce. I sincerely hope you enjoy the conversation.
Peace + Plants,
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Thanks to this week’s sponsors
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Note: One of the best ways to support the podcast is to support the sponsors. For a complete list of all RRP sponsors and their respective vanity url’s and discount codes, visit my Resources page and click “Sponsors”.
Check out Bruce (and Kathy Freston’s) book: Clean Protein: The Revolution that Will Reshape Your Body, Boost Your Energy—and Save Our Planet*
Background, Context & Reference
- Connect with Bruce: Website | Twitter | Linkedin
- Meet New Crop Capital
- Meet The Good Food Institute | Twitter
- The Good Food Institute: 2017 Year In Review
- LA Times: Is in vitro Meat the new in vitro fertilization? by Bruce Friedrich
- LA Times: Listen to the Pope: Don’t cause animals to suffer or die needlessly by Bruce Friedrich
- Live Kindly: The Vegan Case For Clean Meat and an Ethical Future by Bruce Friedrich
- Innovators Magazine: Make money and save the world by Bruce Friedrich
- Fast Company: Most Americans will happily try eating lab-grown “clean meat”
- Fast Company: Lab-Grown Meat Is Getting Cheap Enough For Anyone To Buy
- Fast Company: People are really, really into plant-based meat these days
- Forbes: What’s Next After Plant-Based? Clean Meat Grown From Animal Cells
- NY Times: What, Exactly, Is Meat? Plant-Based Food Producers Sue Missouri Over Labeling
- NY Times: Got Almond Milk? Dairy Farms Protest Milk Label on Nondairy Drinks
- Wired: Lab-Grown Meat Is Coming, Whether You Like It Or Not
- Guardian: Lab-made meat could be the next food revolution: here’s what it tastes like
- Guardian: Humanity has wiped out 60% of animal populations since 1970, report finds
- Business Insider: We tried the first lab-grown sausage made without killing animals
- The Atlantic: The Farcical Battle Over What to Call Lab-Grown Meat
- Gatesnotes: The Future of Food by Bill Gates
- VICE Munchies: Why the Meat Factories of the Future Will Look Like Breweries
- FoodTank: Ten Questions with Bruce Friedrich, Executive Director at The Good Food Institute
- ClearlyVeg: The Good Food Institute and What It Means for Animal Agriculture
- Food Navigator: Avoid the ‘V’ word, and other tips to boost meat-free and dairy-free sales
- 80,000 Hours: Bruce Friedrich makes the case that inventing outstanding meat replacements is the most effective way to help animals
- TODAY: ‘Meatless’ meat: Is it the future?
- TEDxSonomaCounty: Market Forces and Food Technology Will Save the World | Bruce Friedrich
- Food and Agriculture Organization of The UN: “Livestock’s Long Shadow”
- Clean meat producers: Memphis Meats
- Plant-based meat producers: Beyond Meat
- Plant-based meat producers: Impossible Foods
- Plant-based foods producer: Hampton Creek
- Book: Diet For A Small Planet* by Frances Moore Lappé
- Documentary: Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret*
- Documentary: What The Health*
- Google search: The End of Antibiotics
Notable People Discussed
- Kathy Freston: vegan and wellness activist, co-author of Clean Protein* and (2x) podcast guest
- Paul Shapiro: Author of Clean Meat*, TEDx speaker, TryVeg founder and podcast guest
- Neal Barnard: American doctor, author, founding president of PCRM and (2x) podcast guest
- Yuval Noah Harari: historian, lecturer, author Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind *, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow*, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century* and podcast guest
- Ethan Brown: Founder and CEO of plant-based meat producer: Beyond Meat
- Pat Brown: Former Stanford University biochemistry professor, CEO, founder of Impossible Foods
- Uma Valeti, MD: Cardiologist, entrepreneur and CEO of Memphis Meats
- Bill Gates: Co-founder of the world’s largest PC software company – Microsoft
- Professor Mark Post, MD, PhD: Professor of Physiology at Maastricht University, Netherlands
Related Podcasts You Might Enjoy
- RRP #286: Bruce Friedrich is Innovating The Future of Food
- RRP #352: Kathy Freston Is The Queen Of Clean Protein
- RRP #342: What Is “Clean Meat”? Paul Shapiro On The Future Of Food
- RRP #136: Ethan Brown: Reinventing How To Feed The World
- RRP #176: Cowspiracy: How Animal Agriculture Is Destroying The Planet & What You Can Do About It
- RRP# 278: “What The Health” – How Corporate Collusion Is Making Us Sick & Costing Us Trillions“
Thanks to Jason Camiolo for production, audio engineering, interstitial music and show notes; Margo Lubin and Blake Curtis for video, editing and graphics. Portraits by Reece Robinson. Theme music by Ana Leimma.
*Disclosure: Books and products denoted with an asterisk are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
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