In 2014, Pollan co-hosted a discussion and informal debate on the topic of genetic modification at UC Berkeley featuring prominent plant geneticist Pamela Ronald , professor at UC Davis , whose research-based position "strongly disagrees with Pollan’s view that . crops, broadly, are failing."  A New Yorker reporter observed that Pollan's largely anti-GMO student base at the discussion itself constituted, "a kind of monoculture," yet that Pollan sought "to introduce an invasive species" by engaging Ronald. The event, while predictably contentious, reportedly produced a rare instance of courteous, productive exchange between the two main sharply-opposed viewpoints on genetically-modified crops. 
The global mock-meats market increased by eighteen percent between 2005 and 2010,  and in the United States by eight percent between 2012 and 2015, to $553 million a year.  De Vegetarische Slager , the first known vegetarian butcher shop, selling mock meats, opened in the Netherlands in 2010,   while America's first vegan butcher, the Herbivorous Butcher, opened in Minneapolis in 2016.   By 2016, forty-nine percent of Americans were drinking plant milk , although 91 percent still drank dairy milk.  In the United Kingdom the plant milk market increased by 155 percent in two years, from 36 million litres in 2011 to 92 million in 2013.  In 2011 Europe's first vegan supermarkets appeared in Germany: Vegilicious in Dortmund and Veganz in Berlin.