The Plant-Based Food Farce
Fraud Foods Are Not All They're 'Cooked' Up to Be
Imagine if you will … you are cruising down the aisle at the grocery store and you come across a box of frozen broccoli. You think, “oh yes, this will pair well with my grilled chicken and pasta salad tonight.” But as you pick up the box you suddenly realize that this broccoli is branded as, “Beyond Impossible Meat-Based Vegetables.” You’re intrigued.
You turn the box over to read the ingredients and it lists, “this broccoli contains beef, poultry, pork, and whatever else is squeezed into a hotdog.” You wonder, who in their right mind would by this stuff? Perhaps there are carnivores out there that desire the taste of broccoli without all the fiber. Perhaps, you think.
Now that sounds crazy, right? Well, now reverse the situation and think about a box of plant-based burgers. I can’t be the only one to see the absurdity of these creations, can I?
Yeah, yeah, I know there are vegans out there that don’t eat meat or meat by-products. I get that. But, why take a perfectly good vegetable and run it through an industrial lab factory to transform it into some Frankenstein-monster of another food? If you want broccoli, eat broccoli. If you want a burger, eat a burger.
Anyway, I’m not one to dictate the way others live their lives. Live free, I say. But that doesn’t mean I can’t ridicule absurdity. And this is absurdity.
Plant-Based Meat Stocks Take Hit
Stock of Beyond Meat — plant-based meat company from Los Angeles — is now trading at 87% below its all-time high.Could this be the beginning of fake-meat’s fall?
Could it be that this fantasy of industrial fake meat was fueled by the easy monetary policy of the world’s central banks? Easy money tricks investors into thinking there are more resources available than in reality. So, resources tend to get directed into creating things that otherwise wouldn’t have a chance of making it onto a consumer’s priority list.
Everyone makes decisions based on a scale of personal preferences, otherwise known as the “law of marginal utility.” We choose what we find most desirable, which apparently in some cases right now is fake meat. Thus, the market employs and directs resources (i.e., raw materials, labor, capital, etc.) required to bring this fake meat to consumers.
But there are only so many scarce resources available in this world. If some of those resources are employed for stuff no one wants, well it’s clear that those resources are wasted. The market will eventually reveal what is a wasteful use of resources and what is not. If a profit is made, then the investment was productive.
With an easy monetary policy, all the newly created money gets allocated into productive and non-productive investments. Once that flow of easy money starts to dry up, a correction occurs and the market weeds out the waste, aka the malinvestment. And we are starting to see the market crack with the drop in money supply growth. During a correction, there’s chaos and only after the dust settles do we see what investments were strong enough to survive.
I am of the opinion that easy money has propped up the fake-meat industry among others. With a correction seemingly beginning to occur, I think we will see the fake-meat fad wither and die. And as prices rise due to all the monetary inflation, perhaps vegans and others will choose the real stuff over the more expensive lab food. We shall see.