XPrize offers $15m for realistic and sustainable 'alternative' meat

Nonprofit XPrize has teamed with ASPIRE to launch its new 'Feed the Next Billion' competition, one that offers up $15 million to develop realistic and sustainable alternatives to fish and chicken meats. This competition was launched under the Future of Food Impact Roadmap, which aims to make food more sustainable and secure within decades.

We've seen quite a few developments in the past few years when it comes to meat alternatives and lab-grown meat. Environmental and health concerns have spurred the rise of these technologies and products, the most notable at the consumer level arguably being the Impossible Burger.

There are multiple barriers when it comes to launching alternative meats, however, not the least of which is the texture, flavor, cost, and sustainability of the products. That's where XPrize's new competition comes in. Winning teams will be tasked with developing 'multiple consistent cuts of a meat alternative that replicates the look, taste, smell, feel, cooking behavior and nutritional properties of a structured fillet of fish or chicken breast,' according to the organization.

However, the alternative meats should have less of an impact on the environment compared to raising traditional meat livestock, XPrize notes, and the teams will also need to show that their products could be scaled for production and global distribution.

XPrize Founder Peter H. Diamonds, MD, said:

Billions of individuals do and will desire higher quality protein as a food source, but the earth is incapable of providing this with traditional livestock. A much more sustainable, scalable methodology is required. XPRIZE Feed the Next Billion seeks to create poultry and fish that is affordable, sustainable, more nutritious, and a lower cost than mechanisms now in place. We believe hundreds of entrepreneurs will focus on driving breakthroughs in this critical and important area to help feed the world.