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🔑 Key Takeaways

  1. Challenging our beliefs and taking risks can open doors to unexpected and fulfilling opportunities, even if we never envisioned ourselves as entrepreneurs.
  2. Taking risks involves finding what aligns with one's calling, as sometimes the biggest risk is not pursuing a path that feels right and missing out on fulfillment.
  3. Redefined Meat offers a plant-based alternative to traditional meat production, addressing environmental and ethical concerns while providing tasty and satisfying meat alternatives.
  4. Passion, determination, and risk-taking are essential in pursuing one's purpose, as demonstrated by Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's ability to overcome obstacles and make an impact in the plant-based meat industry.
  5. Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's ability to think outside the box and assemble a diverse team led to the successful development of viable plant-based meat products, driven by a passion for sustainability and impactful change.
  6. Eshchar Ben-Shitrit and his team used 3D printing to create a replicable alternative to meat, showcasing the possibilities of this technology in the food industry.
  7. By setting ambitious goals, forming strategic partnerships, and prioritizing product quality, Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's company successfully transitioned from selling 3D printers to becoming a major player in the meat industry.
  8. Continuous improvement and collaboration with experts are essential in creating plant-based meats that closely resemble premium animal steaks.
  9. Redefined meat offers a flavorful, tender, and sustainable alternative to traditional meat products, appealing to a broader range of consumers. Despite a slight price premium, consumers value the unique experience it provides.
  10. Plant-based meat products have the potential to be more affordable, easily produced on a large scale, and profitable, ultimately offering a sustainable alternative to traditional meat.

📝 Podcast Summary

From Corporate Careers to Plant-Based Meat: The Unexpected Journey of Redefine Meat

Eshchar Ben Shire and his co-founder, Adam Laha, initially believed they were not cut out to be entrepreneurs or risk takers. They had successful corporate careers and had no intention of starting their own business. However, as they reached their thirties, they began to question their future and became frustrated with the idea of spending the next forty years in the same corporate environment. This dissatisfaction led them to explore new possibilities and ultimately launch Redefine Meat, a company that uses 3D printing technology to create plant-based meat alternatives. This story teaches us that sometimes taking risks and challenging our own beliefs can lead us down unexpected and fulfilling paths, even if we never saw ourselves as entrepreneurs before.

Discovering Purpose: Taking Risks and Finding Fulfillment

Not all entrepreneurs are risk takers. Eshchar Ben-Shitrit, despite being comfortable in the corporate world, realized that he wanted something different for himself after the birth of his son. He decided to step away from the corporate ladder and join a startup, where he felt a sense of purpose and the opportunity to make a significant impact. This experience taught him that taking risks is not necessarily about diving into the unknown, but rather about finding what truly aligns with one's individual calling or purpose. Sometimes, the biggest risk is not pursuing a path that feels right, as it may mean missing out on something truly fulfilling.

Redefining Meat: An Alternative Solution to the Negative Impacts of Beef Consumption

There is a growing awareness of the negative impacts of beef consumption on the environment and animal welfare. Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's personal experience of becoming a father and his visit to a dairy farm made him realize the emotional and ethical implications of consuming meat. This led him to quit his job and eventually start redefined Meat, a plant-based meat company aimed at providing an alternative to traditional meat production. The carbon footprint of beef production is significantly higher than that of other meats, and the excessive resources used to raise cows for food is unsustainable. The challenge lies in finding ways to create tasty and satisfying meat alternatives that can reduce the environmental damage caused by meat consumption.

From Rejection to Revolution: Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's Journey in Plant-Based Meat

Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's journey into the plant-based meat industry was driven by a desire to make a meaningful impact and be part of a revolution. Despite facing initial rejection from major companies in the field, Ben-Shitrit's passion for creating a plant-based steak using 3D printing technology pushed him to explore the possibilities. He recognized that while replicating ground meat was relatively easy, replicating the complexity of a steak was a significant challenge. Ben-Shitrit's lack of expertise in food and 3D printing didn't deter him from experimenting in his kitchen and investing in a 3D printer. This takeaway highlights the power of passion, determination, and the willingness to take risks in pursuing one's purpose.

Thinking outside the box: The journey of creating plant-based meat

Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's initial experimentation with creating plant-based meat led to unforeseen challenges and failures. However, he had the intuition to separate the components of meat - muscle, fat, and blood - and began blending different plant-based proteins and fats to mimic these components. Despite the inedible results, Ben-Shitrit's ability to think outside the box and pursue wide ideas impressed people. With limited funds, he hired a team of diverse individuals to help identify gaps and develop prototypes. This team eventually included a food engineer, a 3D printing expert, a maker, and a chef. Inspired by their passion for the planet and a desire to make a meaningful impact, they joined Ben-Shitrit's venture. Ultimately, their dedication and combination of technology and sustainability led to the creation of viable products for testing and development.

Exploring the Potential of 3D Printing in Food

Eshchar Ben-Shitrit and his team embarked on a journey to explore the possibilities of 3D printing in the realm of food. They started by setting up a lab and sourcing various proteins, flavors, and fats to manipulate in their homemade 3D printer. While their initial creations were not tasty or meaty, it showcased a new property of food that caught the attention of food scientists. Their goal shifted from selling the printers to restaurants to creating a fully replicable alternative to meat. Through different layers of printing, they were able to achieve a steak-like texture, complete with intramuscular grain and a chewy consistency. The team even developed a blood component that replicated the taste and experience of biting into real steak. This venture highlights the immense potential of 3D printing in the food industry.

From 3D Printers to Meat: How Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's Company Shifted Gears and Took the Market by Storm

Eshchar Ben-Shitrit's plant-based Meat company made a strategic pivot and focused on selling Meat rather than 3D printers. This shift was prompted by a meeting with a large beef company, where Ben-Shitrit boldly stated that his company aspired to become the world's largest Meat company. This change in mindset garnered applause and support from the beef company, leading to a shift in the company's direction. Additionally, partnering with renowned chefs like Marco Pierre White and Ron Blouse gave credibility and endorsement to the plant-based Meat product. This collaboration helped Ben-Shitrit's company stand out in a highly competitive market and gain attention from consumers and investors. By prioritizing the quality and taste of their product, they were able to overcome challenges such as securing shelf space in supermarkets.

Humility and Collaboration: The Key to Advancing Plant-Based Meat Industry

Humility and the passion to listen are key in the plant-based meat industry. Companies must recognize the incredible nature of meat, developed over millions of years of evolution, and acknowledge that they are not yet at the same level. Instead of claiming perfection, they should collaborate with experts, like chefs and butchers, to gather honest feedback and continuously improve their products. This process involves constantly changing and shaping the plant-based meat to achieve a more natural flavor, texture, and diversity that can rival different cuts and types of animal meat. While progress has been made, the ultimate goal is to create a fully plant-based steak that is indistinguishable from premium animal steaks.

Redefining Meat: Elevating Quality and Competing with Tradition

The aim of redefined Meat is to constantly increase the benchmark of quality and compete with traditional meat products. While Israeli beef may not be the best in the world, high-tech companies are substituting meat with redefined meat that is not only better in terms of flavor and tenderness, but also healthier and more sustainable. However, the challenge lies in competing with countries like France where even a burger is considered a steak and consumed with a knife and fork. The focus is on finding a benchmark that appeals to a broader range of consumers and improving the product to meet their expectations. Although redefined meat carries a slight premium in price, consumers are willing to pay for the unique experience it offers as a sustainable and healthier alternative.

The Potential of Plant-Based Meat: Cheaper, Scalable, and Profitable.

The future of meat production lies in innovative technologies and plant-based alternatives. The interview with Eshchar Ben-Shitrit, the founder of a plant-based meat company, highlights the potential for these products to become cheaper and more scalable than traditional meat. Despite the capital-intensive nature of the business, the use of simple ingredients and advanced technology has allowed the company to achieve profitability on an individual level. Looking ahead, the goal is to become a major player in the meat industry, with a presence in restaurants and nationwide retailers. The ambition is to ultimately be the first meat company to eliminate reliance on animals, offering a healthy and sustainable alternative for consumers. Though challenging, this pursuit is driven by the incredible potential for a world without traditional meat production.