The next global agricultural revolution | Bruce Friedrich

In 2019, humanity received a warning: 30 of the world’s leading scientists
released the results of a massive three-year study
into global agriculture and declared that meat production
is destroying our planet and jeopardizing global health. One of the study’s authors explained that “humanity now poses a threat
to the stability of the planet … [This requires] nothing less than
a new global agricultural revolution.” As somebody who’s spent
the last two decades advocating a shift away
from industrial meat production, I wanted to believe that this clarion call
was going to make a difference. The thing is, I’ve seen this sort of thing
again and again and again for decades. Here’s 2018 from the journal “Nature,” 2017 from “Bioscience Journal,” 2016 from the National
Academy of Sciences. The main point of these studies
tends to be climate change. But antibiotic resistance
represents just as big of a threat. We are feeding massive doses
of antibiotics to farm animals. These antibiotics are then
mutating into superbugs that threaten to render
antibiotics obsolete within all of our lifetimes. You want a scare? Google: “the end of working antibiotics.” I’m going to get one thing out of the way: I am not here to tell anybody what to eat. Individual action is great, but antibiotic resistance
and climate change — they require more. Besides, convincing the world
to eat less meat hasn’t worked. For 50 years, environmentalists,
global health experts and animal activists have been begging the public
to eat less meat. And yet, per capita meat consumption is as high as it’s been
in recorded history. The average North American last year
ate more than 200 pounds of meat. And I didn’t eat any. (Laughter) Which means somebody out there
ate 400 pounds of meat. (Laughter) On our current trajectory, we’re going to need to be producing
70 to 100 percent more meat by 2050. This requires a global solution. What we need to do is we need to produce
the meat that people love, but we need to produce it
in a whole new way. I’ve got a couple of ideas. Idea number one:
let’s grow meat from plants. Instead of growing plants,
feeding them to animals, and all of that inefficiency, let’s grow those plants,
let’s biomimic meat with them, let’s make plant-based meat. Idea number two: for actual animal meat, let’s grow it directly from cells. Instead of growing live animals,
let’s grow the cells directly. It takes six weeks to grow
a chicken to slaughter weight. Grow the cells directly,
you can get that same growth in six days. This is what that looks like at scale. It’s your friendly
neighborhood meat brewery. (Laughter) I want to make two points about this. The first one is, we believe we can do it. In recent years, some companies
have been producing meat from plants that consumers cannot distinguish
from actual animal meat, and there are now dozens of companies
growing actual animal meat directly from cells. This plant-based and cell-based meat gives consumers everything
that they love about meat — the taste, the texture and so on — but with no need for antibiotics and with a fraction of the adverse
impact on the climate. And because these two technologies
are so much more efficient, at production scale these products will be cheaper. But one quick point about that — it’s not going to be easy. These plant-based companies have spent
small fortunes on their burgers, and cell-based meat has not yet
been commercialized at all. So we’re going to need all hands on deck to make these the global meat industry. For starters, we need
the present meat industry. We don’t want to disrupt
the meat industry, we want to transform it. We need their economies of scale, their global supply chain,
their marketing expertise and their massive consumer base. We also need governments. Governments spend tens of billions
of dollars every single year on research and development focused on global health
and the environment. They should be putting some of that money
into optimizing and perfecting the production of plant-based
and cell-based meat. Look, tens of thousands of people
died from antibiotic-resistant superbugs in North America just last year. By 2050, that number is going to be
10 million per year globally. And climate change represents
an existential threat to huge portions of our global family, including some of the poorest people
on the face of the planet. Climate change, antibiotic resistance —
these are global emergencies. Meat production is exacerbating
these emergencies on a global scale. But we are not going
to decrease meat consumption unless we give consumers alternatives that cost the same or less
and that taste the same or better. We have the solution. Let’s make meat from plants.
Let’s grow it directly from cells. It’s past time that we mobilize
the resources that are necessary to create the next global
agricultural revolution. Thank you. (Applause)


  1. Meat production is destroying our planet and jeopardizing global health. Use more plant based meat. Grow meat from cells rather than animals. Will result in cheaper, better tasting and more healthy meat. #TEDTalk

  2. seriously you want people to eat fake meats produced in labs ?! and we get more health problems and cancers !
    we should stop making food as industry it is natural and make it natural that way it will be absolutly healthy and safe

  3. I'd be happy enough to eat plant based or lab grown meat, or insects for that matter. Protein is protein. Find a way to produce it cheaply and we're there.

  4. 3:06 How can anyone be against this? Not only is it good for the planet, it just sounds awesome

    "What do you do for a living?" " I GROW MEAT "

  5. After plant based meat and lab meat become common, I'm sure some health experts will say the fake meat are not healthy. Many people will keep on eating animal meat.

  6. are you an idiot or acting like one? agriculture has meat production as well as grain production and vegetable, fruit, fishery as part of the whole process. learn what Agriculture stands for and get back here!

  7. Burger patties? Sure. A nice piece of beef filet? If you can do that for the price of a restaurant meal, you've probably already solved the organ transplant crisis.

  8. while I agree with the goals, the statistics he gives seem… dumb. I'm too lazy to check their validity but one for example could assume that a year when 10 million die a year from a single cause, 55.3 mil is the current death count per year. So either he assumed the population grew a ton, or assumed that other causes such as old age of cancer became less significant.
    So… yeah, great points, but crappy presentation.

  9. Anybody who thinks he can get "all hands on deck" is crazy. You will need a geheimnesstatspolizei and its' attendant governmental organs in power to get all your hands on deck. People who insist that there is only one way will become the new Reichsfuhrers… the new world order of …

  10. how many centuries of weakening people with these tactics do we need to go through before we realize they need to have and keep us weak.

  11. This is really disgusting… We should not change nature this way. Just ban antibiotics, meat will become more expensive = less consumption and no super bacteria!

  12. Plant based meat will be cheaper? What a laugh. The capitalists will look to increasing profits using this technology.

  13. I'm proud to say that I've been vegan for over two years, but I'm still waiting for others to join in larger numbers, c'mon people, what are you waiting for, government? bahahaha

  14. I am glad that I am smarter now, having studied the politics around food, than to believe everything this guy is saying. Agree that industrial meat production needs to be kinder to the environment and the production animals and that we don't need to eat as much meat to live, but think about who's invested in cell based meat production and plant based meat. Aren't they some of the same people who invented chemicals that kill microorganisms in soil and potentially our gut microbiome then created GMO corn that is often harmful to the health of production animals? The harm done to the animals is one of the reasons they have to be given antibiotics. While fanatic animal rights activits (along with religious groups pushing for vegetarianism, and doctors that have established their careers on preaching the benefits of vegetarian diet) may object to eating meat, respectable animal welfare scientis are a mix of vegan/vegetarian and ominivores. I also personally don't like how they completely lack regard for plant life – just as silent animals' welfare is often neglected, plants are treated like non-living things. I know that's a concept not everyone would agree on, but in any case, I am waiting for a guy like him to take the lead, realizing that the best thing that can happen to the planet/environment is for humans to cease.

  15. When I see parents and children at fast food restaurants takings one or two bytes from a hamburger and throwing the rest out because they gotton bored with it, is one of the biggest problems! To me that showing disrespect to the animal life, and causing more animals to give there life needlessly, the vegetarians says that this artificial meat is Better Than the Real Thing? the sad thing is he might be right, considering the way they mistreat the animals in their greed driven system. As far as global warming goes he's recommending a patch on a patch on a patch with unknown outcomes. Safe and inexpensive energy is the first place to start, after waiting 60 years and still no viable Fusion Reactor, maybe it's time for a thorium molten salt reactor.

  16. PERMACULTURE PERMACULTURE PERMACULTURE it’s already been established jump on board and help heal the world

  17. He's talking such rubbish. Just check this talk on how to reverse global warming and from EARTH turning into a Desert..It requires returning large herds of animals to wiped out areas and see how they turn a desert into an oasis…and there's plenty of meat for everyone, organic enough even to feed lions, tigers and other predators besides humans. The person advocating this has turned millions of acres into lush green lands by just putting herds of either goats, cattle, or whatever roamed around the Earth in large herds before humans turned into idiots eating plants only. Large herbivores survive on grass because they have FOUR stomachs to process the plant material and finally convert it into meat. Humans have only one stomach and our canines prove that we were meant to eat real meat but from animals that roamed free and not kept in caged conditions. And also eat meat sparingly.
    Check this video out

  18. Grow meat… Yeah, cuz THAT doesn't require deflorestation, pesticides and huge water consumption.
    Grow cells… Sure, no chemicals or huge energy use for incubators involved there.

  19. Was that an appeal to tax funded r&d at the end? Ideas that have to be enforced at the barrel of a gun just suck. Try harder.

  20. Im never stopping Eating meat..!! sorry but vegan food is not Filling and also Its mostly for Leftists… Real men eat Meat & Not Salads. Fact. .

  21. Question is; do we really need this or do we actually need to go through a time where half the population of the world dies? Solving the problem this way is only going to create a greater problem in a long run…think!

  22. Vat grown meat is here, but the beef producers are fighting it. Big time. Paying politicians for laws that will stop it. And it's a fraction of the cost of regular meat.

  23. Start a garden! A perennial garden is planted once and grows back every year. This provides instant food outside your door and naturally reduces meat consumption. For truly sustainable meat production, localized meat production is the only real way. Animals are on earth to serve functions to the ecosystem. Wholistic farm management solves these issues. The issue is not needing new tech, it’s better management of what we already have and to localize it.

  24. "Vat grown" meat production is inevitable and will probably taste better – aside from the efficiency, cost and ecological benefits.

  25. Third alternative: conservation agriculture. Mob graze cattle on grass as part of the process of soil healing and carbon sequestration in topsoil. No need for antibiotics this way either. More profitable for farmers too.

  26. Sound like yet another processed food which is not designed to kill you instant but give you chronic diseases and kill you slowly.

  27. the last line in antibiotics colistin has become resisted due to the chinese meat industry i wonder if it's possible to make a new type of antibiotic otherwise i fear the future will be edited genomes as they are talking about right now over mosquitoes and and malaria

  28. Super big killing humans is nothing to do with usage of antibiotic to the animals. Show me the evidence dumbo 🐘

  29. Isn't this stuff getting a bit long of tooth? I am old enough to remember an imminent ice age. Impending ice age is due to become fashionable again soon enough.

  30. light is material – when you die everything is still electrical light matter do not go to the light – you will come back here again and be enslaved again – cycled

  31. It seems to me the next big thing is reclaiming land from the desert, perhaps helped in part by a recent cut by 60 PER CENT in the cost of large scale desalination.
    But there are many other innovations that spring from people close to the land in many parts of the world.

  32. In the past 3 months we have started seeing a shift from the term "climate change" to "climate emergency". This speaker does the same.

    I wonder why this shift is happening among all Western countries. The UK and the USA and France can't even call French Fries (chips, frites) the same thing, but they all call Earth's climate an "emergency" and they all offer the same solution: more government control, more taxes, more regulations.


  33. We need NATURAL food. This is a false industrial food-prophet. Without knowledge of nature , biochemistry or methabolism. A crazy vegetarian working for the Man!

  34. 2:47 – I've reviewed a debate that Bruce Friedrich has taken part in on lab grown meat. He's financially invested in lab grown meat, so it makes sense that he would advocate for it. But as for Bruce being an animal rights advocate, I think his financial investment might be blinding him from the reality of what's happening with lab grown meat and its effects on animals. In Bruce's debate on lab grown meat, it was brought up that at the time, lab grown meat could only come from fetal bovine serum, meaning animals have to be killed to produce lab grown meat. Now, if this results in less animal suffering, I'm all for it, but with Bruce being a vegan, I'm a bit surprised that he's supporting killing animals, especially since it doesn't seem that this will result in less total animal deaths. Maybe he's very hopeful with how the technology will progress.

    From his debate, it seemed that lab grown meat wasn't being developed to REPLACE factory farmed meat, but IN ADDITION TO IT. The growing demand for meat in developing countries can't be reached with animal agriculture because of space limitations. Bruce didn't address the concerns that lab grown meat wouldn't cut down on total animal suffering, because of the current requirements of the technology.

    It's good that Bruce is hopeful about how the technology will progress and become more efficient at scale. I hope he's right, and I hope the technology is used to reduce animal suffering, not increase it.

  35. We don´t need to eat meat, dairy and eggs to be healthy. It makes breeding and killing animals unnecessary and so moraly wrong. Watch "Dominon" to learn about how is the animal industry. Is in youtube.

  36. governments should stop the meat subsides and instead to subside plant agriculture. The world will go vegan because will be impossible to buy meat so expensive. It is even not necessary to make lab meat.

  37. Personally, I would be ecstatic to try meat alternatives if they had a similar macronutrient profile to that of meat. I haven't seen anything yet that even comes close.

  38. Hahahaha.. That was a great fairytale written by rich corporate globalists who want you weak and sick . Corporations want to take our ability to grow healthy foods for ourself and the want to take total control over food production water use and air by creating lies to do it. He wh owns these 3 controls the world ! GMO vegetables slathered with roundup poison is good for you ? Kiss my grits.

  39. Lol this is so silly. Why not force meat producers to farm based on grass pastures and not intensively raise animals in filth while feeding them farmed grain? Technical solutions cause long term problems. Let be wholistic in approach.

  40. HELP!!!! Please this is not a joke. My friend has found away to get water up hill for free and can create electricity. This is a whole new world of green energy that has the same power as a water mill. My friend is very intelligent but is very cautious about how to share this knowledge to the world without someone stealing his idea. And have very little money so we can not afford to get it patterned yet. I wish to know what can we do to get this idea started. Im stuck it feels like this idea could help the world.

  41. I am a bit disappointed with this Ted talk, he has said actually nothing.

    Is like if i come on stage and i say:
    "The world needs electric cars with fusion reactors the size of a watch to power them, Let´s do it! i heard some folkes are trying, the goverment has to invest on this "

    Pointless talk, next time he should bring a new contribution or idea, not just repeating the same things again and again.

  42. I wish he would've talked about the current and future state of cell based and plant based meat production. I'm in for cell based meat production. I just don't know where it's at or what are the challenges/breakthroughs in the field.

  43. Implementing these ideas is the stumbling block. There is much resistance. There is much love for high-calorie, high-fat, high-salt foods.

  44. Wait… wait…. wait … he didn't finish by saying, " … and I'm gay… " How are we to believe him?

  45. Not sure if i would want to eat GMO meat plants… – even if it tastes funny… – But Laboratory meat sounds good! – do that!

  46. a complete reduction in meat consumption would likely only lessen ghg emission by a few percent, its barely significant especially given the large change in lifestyle. furthermore the anti-biotics thing is not all that bad, the growth in bacteria with resistance is less than the growth in anti-biotics. not to mention that there are well known anti-biotics for which no resistance can develop as far as known (silver etc).

    this is just a vegan circle jerk not proper science.

  47. It's about finding ways to get protein more directly from plants, like the vegetarians have always been saying. Also the health benefits of eating less carbs, more proteins, and good fats.

  48. I am not a doctor, but it seems to me that the threat of antibiotic resistant microbes is overplayed in the scientific media. If you take a teaspoon of dirt from your back yard, there are literally hundreds of compounds there that are undeveloped antibiotics, being produced by soil bacteria as a defense against other microorganisms. If it were possible for a microorganism to become resistant to all of them we would see more bugs like this. But it is extremely uncommon, as there is a biological cost associated with antibiotic resistance.

    I think the problem is that doctors have favorite antibiotics that they prescribe, and there are strains which are becoming resistant to these antibiotics. Lesser known antibiotics need to be developed and added to the public health care system, and doctors should be instructed on how and when to administer them. Antibiotic use should also be reduced, if possible, since antibiotics are bad for the healthy microbes that live in your stomach. In industrial meat production it is difficult to diagnose and expensive to treat sick animals, so they all receive antibiotics as a preventative measure; vaccinations are a superior choice, but not yet available for every infectious microorganism.

  49. Disappointed he had nothing new to say. Anyone reading the news thoroughly would know this more or less already.

  50. I prefer plantbased meat, it is much more healthy 💚🌱 a awesome good speech👏 and I highly hope, a lot of people will become an enlightenment and change theire lifestyle to a vegans one 💚✌

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