• Report: Urgent Infrastructure Investment Needed to Help Alt-Meat Sector Scale Up



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    A study by GFI Europe has asked key players in the alt-meat industry what challenges they face as the sector grows. The organisation interviewed investors, entrepreneurs, scientists, suppliers, and manufacturers from ten countries.

    One of the report’s key findings is that the sector has expanded to the point where venture capital is no longer enough. Additional funding is vital for major infrastructure projects like manufacturing and processing plants, and debt financing will also be required to make economies of scale possible.

    Another finding is that the sector needs more raw materials. GFI Europe suggests that governments could step in by providing farmers with insurance, price guarantees, and technical assistance to grow more of the types of crops required.

    Finally, the alt-meat industry needs more skilled labour, which will mean training new workers and reskilling existing ones. The report found that many industry players are frustrated by the lack of relevant university programs to give workers the skills they need.

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    Last year, investments in alt-protein companies almost doubled, with particularly high growth for cultivated meat. A recent study predicted that the market could be worth $155 billion by 2027, and another found that alt-protein could make up 11% of the global protein market by 2035. However, the latter report stressed that parity in cost, taste, and texture would be vital to make this happen — and that will require investment.

    “We’re very excited about the growth in plant-based and cultivated meat, but urgent work now needs to be done to ensure this sector can scale up and realise its true potential,” said Carlotte Lucas, corporate engagement manager at the Good Food Institute Europe. “In particular, we’re going to need to attract a more diverse group of investors to build up the infrastructure that companies now need in order to expand. We also have to scale up supply chains and train and reskill a lot of people to create the talent pool these businesses will need over the next few years.”

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