Test Achats: Meat replacement products don’t always replace meat

Many of the meat replacement products on the market are not actually a replacement for meat at all, or are in some other way unhealthy, according to a survey carried out by the consumer group Test Achats. 

More and more people these days are looking for alternatives to meat, whether they adopt a fully vegan/vegetarian lifestyle or are simply looking to cut down on their consumption of meat.

The market has responded, with a growing number of products tailor-made for people who want to eat less meat but still have the feeling of eating meat. 

The trouble is, however, that many such products – meat-free burgers or meatballs, for example – are no substitute for meat from a nutritional point of view. 

Test Achats examined 37 different types of ready-made meat replacement products like hot dogs, burgers and mince, and looked at how healthy the product was in itself, as well as how effective it would be as a replacement for meat. 

Among the findings: many such products contain added saturated fat, brought in to try to mimic the texture and mouth-feel of actual meat. But saturated fat is unhealthy in itself, in quantities above 10g per 100g of meat.

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