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SXSW 2021

Bugs And Kelp, Feeding Our Post-Pandemic Planet

As we build a better food system out of the pandemic, cellular meat or bleeding plant patties may seem like a great idea, but bugs and kelp might just be our best bet to substantially change how we feed people on a global scale. Alternative crops like kelp, algae and seaweed, or micro-livestock like farmed insects are often overshadowed by flashier techno-food solutions with wild valuations, but both are nutritionally dense and resource efficient methods to grow food that can be deployed today, with historic and cultural roots worldwide. We'll explore industry hurdles and growth opportunities in this nascent space; look at broader consumer perceptions driving larger companies to take stock of alternative proteins, and what the future holds for farmers and founders building this new market.

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  1. Why alternative proteins like seaweed and insects are an ideal future livestock or crop - healthy foods, minimal environmental impacts, fewer zoonoses
  2. Why has it been difficult for innovations like these to take root in the US, and what are the cultural or institutional roadblocks preventing growth?
  3. What can you do as a consumer to explore these new foods, and how can your purchase choice influence the broader food system to be better and do more.



Robert Nathan Allen, Executive Director, Little Herds

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