40Research opportunities
44Commercial whitespaces
39Ecosystem support needs
Key: Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based
Opportunity Production platform Solution category Value chain segment Technology sector Maturity level
Build alternative protein sessions into scientific conferences

Elevating the visibility and credibility of the field at scientific conferences will expand the technical talent pipeline and amplify collaboration and funding efforts.

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem R&D 2 – Early adoption
Building interdisciplinary university research centers of excellence

Interdisciplinary research is essential for tackling many of the complex problems facing today’s world. Though the number of research projects advancing alternative protein science has increased in recent years, this…

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem R&D Workforce 2 – Early adoption
Building alternative protein programs and majors at universities

To ensure a strong talent pipeline, there is a need to launch robust university programming, ranging from certificate programs to short multi-course modules, centered around alternative protein. Full majors would…

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem R&D Workforce
Increasing the number, quality, and diversity of alternative protein-relevant university courses

There is a significant and urgent need to launch and support university and online courses in order to build and extend the talent pipeline of students going into the alternative…

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem R&D Workforce
Coordination among investors with alternative protein industry-specific expertise

Investors specializing in alternative proteins should be leveraged to educate the broader investment community through coalitions, syndicated deals, and co-investments with industry-agnostic investors, and spearhead efforts to facilitate later-stage funding…

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem Investment 2 – Early adoption
Establishing student groups at key universities

Universities are epicenters for creative problem-solving and cutting-edge research advancements, and they can serve as engines for interdisciplinary innovation. However, this potential is not being tapped fully by the alternative…

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem Demand Generation R&D Workforce
Microbial strain-development contract research organizations for alternative protein applications

While emerging fermentation-derived ingredient companies often optimize their strain’s productivity in-house, it may be more efficacious for startups to engage contract research organizations with both deep microbial strain development expertise…

Fermentation Commercial Ecosystem Research R&D Host strain development
Guaranteed offtake contracts for products and ingredients

Guaranteed offtake agreements, where buyers commit to purchase a volume of product, can help secure loans for infrastructure and other high-cost projects.

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem End Products Investment Production End product formulation & manufacturing 1 – Inception
Open-access product formulation specification sheets

Open-access product formulation specifications could provide clear metrics and objectives for product developers on attributes like taste, price, nutrition, and ingredient ratios.

Fermentation Plant-Based Ecosystem End Products R&D End product formulation & manufacturing Ingredient optimization 2 – Early adoption
Forging product development partnerships among ingredient suppliers and manufacturers

Opportunities exist to coordinate product development partnerships between ingredient suppliers, strategic partners, and product manufacturers to directly engage more holistically on product formulation.

Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem End Products Production Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Cell culture media Crop development Feedstocks Ingredient optimization Scaffolding 1 – Inception

Get involved

If you’d like to fund a research project, work on any of these solutions, share information about related efforts that are already underway, or elevate new ideas for advancing the alternative protein industry, we’d love to hear from you!

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Explore key innovation priorities

Review commercial whitespaces, research gaps, technological needs, and investment priorities at each stage of the alternative protein value chain.

How we built this

Advancing Solutions for Alternative Proteins Executive Summary icon

Executive summary

Get an overview of GFI’s Solutions initiative and a summary of key resources.

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Full report

Delve into the full report on the motivation, methodology, rationale, and key findings and recommendations of the Solutions initiative.

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Futures wheels analysis

Explore our framework for uncovering second-order or third-order consequences and implications of hypothetical future scenarios to support better decision-making in the present.

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Future-proofing

Discover key findings from GFI’s premortem analysis of potential threats to the widespread adoption of alternative proteins, including strategies to avoid or mitigate the most pressing risks.