Alternative Protein Solutions Database
Discover ideas for new startups, commercial ventures and products, research projects, ecosystem support, and investment opportunities for plant-based, cultivated, and fermentation-derived proteins.
|Opportunity||Production platform||Value chain segment||Technology sector||End product focus||Relevant actor||Maturity level||Solution category||Topic|
Scaffolds and structural approaches to optimize fat distribution and content in cultivated meat
The inclusion of fat and marbling in cultivated meat is likely to increase its flavor, texture, and consumer appeal. Structural approaches using edible microcarriers, hydrogels, and 3D bioprinting present promising…
|Cultivated||End Products Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design End product formulation & manufacturing Scaffolding||Species-agnostic||Academics Industry Startups||Commercial Research||Industry Science|
Cost-effective sterility controls for cultivated meat
Meticulous attention to sterility controls throughout cultivated meat production is essential to optimize food safety, but the cost of biopharmaceutical-based sterility—the current standard for cell-based processes—is incongruent with large-scale food…
|Cultivated||Production||Bioprocess design Cell culture media End product formulation & manufacturing||Species-agnostic||Industry Policymakers Startups||Ecosystem Research||Industry Policy Science|
Plant-based scaffolds to improve cultivated meat nutrition
A variety of plant-based scaffolds present the opportunity to combine the natural nutritional and structural benefits of plants with the taste and high protein of cultivated meat. Bacterial nanocellulose from…
|Cultivated Plant-Based||End Products Investment Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design End product formulation & manufacturing Scaffolding||Species-agnostic||Academics Industry Startups||Commercial Research||Industry Science|
Semi-continuous bioprocess for whole cut cultivated meat using simultaneous perfusion and stretch
Stretching of engineered muscle constructs has been previously demonstrated to induce alignment and maturation of muscle fibers, which is desirable for whole cut cultivated meat. Stretch stimuli could also be…
|Cultivated||Production R&D||Bioprocess design Scaffolding||Terrestrial-specific||Academics Industry Startups||Commercial Research||Industry Science|
Incorporating omega-3s into cultivated seafood
Cultivated seafood will need to be supplemented with long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids to be nutritionally equivalent or superior to conventional seafood. However, how these compounds can best be incorporated…
|Cultivated||Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design Cell culture media Cell line development End product formulation & manufacturing Scaffolding||Seafood||Academics Industry Startups||Commercial Research||Industry Science|
Repurposing and retrofitting facilities for use in alternative protein manufacturing
The manufacturing capacity for rapid and cost-effective scale-up of alternative protein production is a current constraint on the growth of the industry. Repurposing and retrofitting stranded or underutilized assets such…
|Cultivated Fermentation Plant-Based||Business Services Production Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design End product formulation & manufacturing||Species-agnostic||Academics Donors GFI Industry NGO’s Policymakers Startups||Commercial Ecosystem Policy Research||Industry Policy|
Cultivated meat makerspaces to promote public engagement
Both the cultivated meat industry and interested members of the general public would benefit from the creation of makerspaces focused on cultivated meat. These would be publicly available spaces where…
|Cultivated||R&D Workforce||Bioprocess design Cell culture media Cell line development Scaffolding||Species-agnostic||Academics Donors GFI Industry NGO’s Startups||Ecosystem Research||Science|
Co-cultured support cells for cultivated meat
Cultivated meat research focuses primarily on muscle fibers and fat cells. However, other cell types serve functions that are often under appreciated in their relevance to cultivated meat. Co-culture methods…
|Cultivated||Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design Cell culture media Cell line development||Seafood-relevant||Academics Industry Startups||Commercial Research||Science|
B2B bioreactor technology company
Alternative protein companies would benefit from the availability of off-the-shelf or customizable bioreactors for cultivated meat and fermentation-derived products. This need could be filled by increased investment in and support…
|Cultivated Fermentation||R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs||Bioprocess design||Species-agnostic||Industry Startups||Commercial||Industry Science|
Metabolic modeling for cultivated meat
Academic researchers or consortia consisting of several cultivated meat companies should undertake research aimed at understanding metabolic pathways and fluxes within cultivated meat-relevant cell types. The outputs of this research…
|Cultivated||R&D||Bioprocess design Cell culture media Cell line development||Seafood-relevant||Academics Industry Investors Startups||Research||Science|
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!
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
Get an overview of GFI’s Solutions initiative and a summary of key resources.
Delve into the full report on the motivation, methodology, rationale, and key findings and recommendations of the Solutions initiative.
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.
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.