Cultivated, Cell-Cultured & Biotechnology

GFI’s 2022 State of the Industry Reports Reveal Record Global Investment in Alt Seafood

The Good Foods Institute (GFI) has released its annual State of the Industry Report covering the fields of cultivated, fermented and plant-based proteins, as well as alternative seafood. The report’s biggest findings are summarized here. 

Asia Dominates Alt-Seafood

Global investments in alternative seafood soared in 2021, nearly doubling the total amount invested in 2020. By far, the greatest concentration of investment and research activity took place in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, where the majority of the world’s fish is consumed, and where startups and investors see the most lucrative opportunities.

New Crop Innovations 

The past year saw a surge of interest in novel crops outside of wheat, soy and peas with high protein content and protein functionality. Aquatic crops such as microalgae, seaweeds and duckweed were an especially popular area of research due to their nutritional qualities, high protein functionality and sustainable cultivation. 

Umaro bacon
Seaweed bacon © Umaro Foods

The Coming of Hybrid Products

GFI notes that alt-protein categories are becoming increasingly interconnected with each other, and predicts this will lead to a new generation of premium hybrid foods in 2022. The report cites the partnership between Australian cell-ag startup Vow and fermented company Nourish as an example of this collaboration. Motif Foodworks’ HEMAMI will also open opportunities for plant-based companies to utilize animal-free hemoglobin and other special proteins. 

By the Numbers

Cultivated Meat and Seafood

  • $1.38B raised in 2021 (71% of the all-time investment total)
  • 107 cultivated meat and seafood startups announced by end of 2021 (+ 32% from 2020)

Fermentation 

  • $1.69B raised by dedicated alt protein fermentation companies in 2021 (+285% from 2020, representing 60% of all-time investment)
Perfect Day Chocolate Ice Cream
Fermentation ice cream ©Perfect Day Foods

Plant-Based 

  • $1.93B raised by plant-based meat, seafood, egg, and dairy companies in 2021 (30% of all-time investment)
  • $7.4B was value of the U.S. plant-based retail market in 2021
  • 780+ companies worldwide with focused on plant-based meat, seafood, egg, or dairy

Alternative Seafood

  • $175M raised globally in 2021 ( 92% increase from 2020)
  • $13.9M was value of the U.S. plant-based seafood retail market in 2021 (+ 14% from 2020)
  • 120 companies around the world produce alternative seafood

GFI’s full industry reports can be found here

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