The transition to alternative proteins continues, accelerated by consumers motivated by healthier diets and having a positive impact on the climate


According to BCG and Blue Horizon’s first multi-market survey of alternative proteins, more than 30% of consumers would completely change their diet to alternative proteins to have a positive impact on the climate

BOSTON, July 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Dramatic, above-inflation price increases in animal products during the pandemic have led to an unprecedented surge in sales, funding and public awareness of the alternative protein sector. Growing global concerns about food security and climate impact have further fueled this development. With 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions caused by the food value chain, switching to alternative proteins could be the most capital-efficient and high-impact solution to tackling the climate crisis. It is projected to make up at least 11% of all meat, seafood, eggs and dairy consumed globally by 2035. Alternative proteins will save 3x emissions for every dollar invested against the next best tool in the box: low-carbon cement. forthcoming report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and impact investor Blue Horizon.

The report, The untapped climate opportunity in alternative proteins, will present the results of a survey of more than 3,700 consumers in seven countries (China, France, Germany, Spainthe United Arab Emiratesthe UKand United States) about their reasons for trying alternative proteins and the inhibitors that keep them from buying even more. Three-quarters of survey respondents cited healthier eating as their main motivation for consuming alternative protein, while more than 30% of consumers would completely change their diet to alternative protein if they thought it would have an impact. major climate positive (see appendix ).

Across all markets surveyed, consumers have a positive view of alternative protein: 76% are aware of the category and around nine in ten said they like at least some of the alternative protein products they have tried. While consumers in China and Germany are the most willing to pay near parity with protein equivalents, no consumer in any region is willing to pay a premium for alternative proteins that match meat in taste, texture and nutrition – a premium of price requires added value.

“Almost one in three people in the world is food insecure. Coupled with the impact of ongoing geopolitical crises on the supply chain and food prices, the pressure on the global food system is immense,” says Ben Morac, Managing Director and Partner of BCG. “Moving away from animal-based protein will lead to shorter, more resilient and potentially more local supply chains. The widespread adoption of alternative proteins can eliminate the risk of supply chain disruptions and play a vital role in the fight against climate change, with consumers playing a key role. helped propel this transition.

Bjorn Witte, CEO of Blue Horizon, adds, “The products consumers see on shelves today will be followed by a wave of cleaner, healthier and tastier protein alternatives as technology enables increased innovation. We have seen the rapid development of these technologies in our own portfolio as well as in the wider food technology industry, leading to an overall better range of consumer products. This is great news for today’s consumers, but we’re really just getting started. Future generations will greatly benefit from the demonstrable impact it will have on the environment, as our analysis of climate data shows. This is the second report from BCG and Blue Horizon confirming that protein processing is the most effective way to avoid emissions and generate Capital Employed (IoCE) Impact. If we achieve 11% market penetration by 2035, which is our goal, we could save more carbon emissions than by decarbonizing 95% of the aviation sector. The positive impact is absolutely strong, but the secular and secular drivers have never been stronger – the time to invest is now.”

Acceleration of funding

Capital invested in alternative proteins grew at an annual rate of 124%, from $1 billion in 2019 at $5 billion in 2021, with investments in fermentation and animal cell companies leading the way. Investment in alternative proteins is increasingly global. Middle East funders, which tend to focus on animal cell-based investments, accounted for 11% of global alternative protein investments last year, while APAC investments, fueled by plant-based deals , increased by 92%.

For investors, a key finding of the report is that plant protein investments are more CAPEX efficient in reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions than in any other industry. Penetration of the vegetable protein market as planned in the food for thought I the baseline scenario would save 0.85 gigatonnes of emissions by 2035. This savings potential is equivalent to decarbonizing the majority of the aviation industry. Investing in plant proteins saves the most emissions per capital invested – at least twice as efficient as investing in cement, iron, steel, chemicals or transport. Blue Horizon has developed a proprietary impact framework where each investment is assessed via a theoretical impact value, allowing the company to calculate an accurate IoCE.

Significant advances in the regulation of alternative proteins

Sensible and effective regulation is imperative to ensure that the rapid innovation and growth of the alternative protein market provides customers with safe, healthy and transparent foods. There has been an acceleration, worldwide, to provide regulatory approval for fermentation and animal cell-based products. In 2015, Israel led the way by announcing that its new food safety regulatory framework would apply to alternative proteins. And in its last five-year plan published in January 2022, China recognized the need to “expand beyond traditional crops, livestock and poultry into more abundant biological resources” and incorporated animal cell-based meat and other alternative proteins into its security strategy eating.

Read more about the key findings of the report here:

Media contacts:
Eric Gregoire
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blue horizon
Mark Duck
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About Boston Consulting Group
Boston Consulting Group partners with leaders in business and society to address their biggest challenges and seize their biggest opportunities. BCG pioneered business strategy when it was founded in 1963. Today, we work closely with our clients to take a transformational approach to benefit all stakeholders, enabling organizations to grow, create a sustainable competitive advantage and have a positive societal impact.

Our diverse, global teams bring deep industry and functional expertise and a range of perspectives that challenge the status quo and spark change. BCG offers solutions through cutting-edge management consulting, technology and design, and digital business and enterprise. We work in a uniquely collaborative model across the business and across all levels of the client organization, fueled by the goal of helping our clients thrive and empowering them to make the world a better place.

About Blue Horizon
Blue Horizon is accelerating the transition to a sustainable food system that delivers exceptional returns for investors and the planet. The company is a global pioneer of the future of food. As a pure impact investor, Blue Horizon has shaped the growth of the alternative protein and food technology market. The company invests at the intersection of biology, agriculture and technology with the goal of transforming the global food industry. Blue Horizon was founded in 2016 and is based in Zürich, Switzerland. To date, the company has invested in over 70 companies. Its business model offers an attractive opportunity to invest in the evolution of the global food system while contributing to a healthy and sustainable world.

SOURCEBoston Consulting Group (BCG)


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