Consumers in Singapore most aware, but Chinese and Thai consumers most interested in Cell Ag

Singaporean consumers are the most aware of cell ag, but Chinese and Thai consumers are the most likely to buy cultivated meat and products derived from precision and biomass fermentation once they enter the market –  Japanese consumers are the least likely. These are findings from some of Food Frontier’s latest research into key Asian export markets which identify the most promising market opportunities for local manufacturers of alternative proteins (plant-based meats and products made via cellular agriculture). This spotlight report looks at the consumer awareness and acceptance levels of cell ag, from research that was contained in the wider report.

Of 11 countries assessed across Asia, China, Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, and Japan were highlighted as the five markets that had the greatest potential for sales of alternative proteins.

The research of 1,000 consumers in each of the five markets (5,000 in total) showed that in China, Thailand and Singapore, consumers who have children living in the household are significantly more likely to buy cellular agriculture products (cultivated meat and products of precision or biomass fermentation), and it seems age doesn’t determine Asia’s appetite for novel foods—in some markets acceptance of these novel foods rose with age.

Singapore is the only country in the world that allows the sale of cultivated meat, although its availability is limited. Singaporeans reported price as the number one barrier to consuming cultivated meat, while other markets listed unfamiliarity.

Other key research findings:

  1. Consumers are motivated by the health, environmental, food security and safety benefits of cellular agriculture products

2. Consumers need reassurance about taste and pricing

3. Consumers need to grow familiar with the types of technologies used in making these foods— harmonised language and messaging can help

4.  Foods made from cellular agriculture resonate with people who want to try new, exciting and premium products, especially in Japan and China

  1. Cellular agriculture products appeal more to consumers who are:
  • Unique product buyers
  • Ethical buyers
  • Premium buyers
  • Eco conscious
  • Early adopter

To find out more download the spotlight report on consumer attitudes to cellular agriculture in Asia.

The primary research was gathered by Mintel in partnership with Te Puna Whakaaronui, New Zealand’s independent food and fibre sector think tank.

This report contains the data shared with the cell ag sector by Food Frontier Research Manager Klara Kalocsay during a presentation at the CellAg Summit in June 2023. If you have questions about this data, or other research projects, please contact Klara:

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