Studies & Numbers

New Whitepaper by Tech Investment Bank Bryan, Garnier & Co. Examines Fermentation, Mycoprotein & Cellular Agriculture

BG IRIS, the research platform of European tech investment bank Bryan, Garnier & Co., has published the study Fermentation, Mycoprotein, Cellular Agriculture: Sustainable Solutions for Food Production, providing a comprehensive analysis of the sector and underlying M&A market activity.

Based on extensive research and discussions with key innovators in the field, the paper comprehensively examines various fermentation technologies: traditional fermentation and precision fermentation, mycelium, and cellular agriculture. These techniques can be used to produce sustainably innovative ingredients, replicate animal proteins, and create new food products.

Key findings

By 2050, global food production will increase by 70%, with protein demand increasing by 78%. Solutions are urgently needed to provide populations with safe, nutritious food while combating climate change (livestock farming alone is responsible for around 15% of global greenhouse gas emissions, so sustainable alternatives are needed).

Fermentation has been used for centuries, but thanks to tremendous advances in technology and science, it still has much to offer. The paper presents the various technologies in development, ranging from traditional fermentation to cellular agriculture, and including biomass, precision, and microbial fermentations, as well as new uses of mycelium. The report explores how these techniques can be used to sustainably produce innovative ingredients, replicate animal proteins, or create an entirely new food product. Numerous companies in this space are profiled and other consumer applications for fermentation technologies, particularly in beauty and fashion, are also discussed.

Bryan, Garnier & Co infographic
© Bryan, Garnier & Co

Europe has some catching up to do

Startup companies from the fermentation, mycoproteins, and cellular agriculture sectors were able to raise around EUR 3.7 billion in 2021 and 2022. But at least twice as much is needed so that they can develop their full potential. In addition, regulations and infrastructure deficiencies are slowing down this transformative area, especially in Europe, where safety authorities lag behind their US, Israeli, and Singaporean counterparts in approving novel food products – in the end, Europe runs the risk of innovators seeking approval elsewhere and thus Europe ultimately loses its innovation leadership in the region.

Despite the positive investment dynamics, the sums invested have so far remained manageable, as most startups have raised less than EUR 10 million. There are exceptions primarily in the USA, but Israeli companies such as Believer Meats (EUR 345 million) and Remilk (EUR 131 million) are also well financed.

Although 25% of the companies examined for this study are based in Europe, the region is still lagging behind in terms of funding. The top 5 European startups raised on average 6 times less money than their American counterparts. After all: in the first half of 2023, companies in this area were able to generate EUR 530 million. Europeans accounted for EUR 150 million – above all Cubiq Foods (EUR 50.4 million), Uncommon (formerly Higher Steaks, EUR 28.3 million) a,nd Paleo (EUR 12 million).

The whitepaper is available for download at the following link:

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