Investments & Finance

GFI: Global Alt Protein Investments Drop by €2Bn in 2022, While European Investments Up by 24%

See all bookmarks
BookmarkWant to save and revisit your favorite articles? Upgrade to vegconomist+ and unlock our new bookmark feature. Subscribe today and enjoy a wide range of exclusive perks to gain a competitive edge in the vegan business world!

International nonprofit food awareness organisation The Good Food Institute (GFI), today releases new data on global alt protein investments for the last year. The figures reveal that alt protein companies across Europe raised €579 million last year, nearly 24% more than in 2021.  

However, the numbers also show that global investment in sustainable proteins decelerated in 2022, from a record-breaking €4.7 billion in 2021 to €2.7 billion in 2022, mirroring the marked decline in global venture capital investment. 

La Vie Bacon
©La Vie

France raised over 11 times more 

The latest GFI figures show that France and Spain saw investments increase across all sustainable protein categories. French companies raised €168 million, over 11 times more than last year, while Spanish companies attracted €42 million — a 58% increase from 2021. 

Other figures reveal that the continent’s plant-based sector saw a 15% increase in venture capital deals, raising €284 million in 2022.

According to a report by Boston Consulting Group, plant-based proteins have the highest CO2e savings per dollar of invested capital of any sector. Still, investment in sustainable foods is only a fraction of that committed to renewable energy.

Heura Fish
Image courtesy of Heura

Scandinavia, a fermentation powerhouse

When looking at fermentation companies — which are said to produce the most sustainable alt proteins — the newly released data shows that investment increased by 37%, raising €175 million in 2022. Scandinavia is “fast becoming a fermentation powerhouse,” with investment in Swedish companies tripling to €29 million and funds raised by Finnish companies doubling to €23 million.

UK: cultivated meat sees fourfold jump

Europe’s cultivated meat companies saw investments jump 30% to €120 million, which amounts to more than half of the total funds raised by European cultivated meat companies between 2016 and 2021.

Investments in the UK’s cultivated meat industry increased almost fourfold, with companies raising €68 million in 2022.

Plant-based pea-fungi products
© Peas of Heaven

Financing a sustainable food system

According to the GFI, the global deceleration in investment shows that governments can’t rely on the private sector alone; governments should help finance a sustainable food system. Studies reveal that public R&D funding helps encourage further private investment, accelerates innovation, and delivers long-term economic benefits 

As part of the Green Deal Industrial Plan, a European Sovereignty Fund to support European industry’s green and digital transition to fighting climate change will be presented next summer in the EU parliament. The opportunity to fund sustainable foods should not be missed because it will bring new jobs, funds, and scaling up possibilities for alt protein companies in Europe, says the GFI.

Carlotte Lucas, GFI’s senior corporate engagement manager, commented: “It’s great to see such strong figures across Europe’s sustainable protein sectors. But we need to see this against a backdrop of global deceleration, demonstrating clearly that we can’t rely on private investment alone to build a more sustainable food system, and governments need to step up.”

See all bookmarks