40Research opportunities
44Commercial whitespaces
39Ecosystem support needs

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Key: Cultivated icon Cultivated Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based
Opportunity Production platform Value chain segment Technology sector End product focus Relevant actor Maturity level Solution category Topic
Animal-free, non-recombinant albumin and transferrin for cultivated meat

The identification of non-animal, non-recombinant proteins with similar functionality to serum albumin and transferrin will lead to major cost reductions in cell culture media development, facilitating progress toward achieving price…

Cultivated icon Cultivated Plant-based icon Plant-Based Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Cell culture media Crop development Target molecule selection Species-agnostic Academics Industry Investors Startups Commercial Research Industry Science
Plant-based protein makerspaces

Plant-based protein makerspaces would be publicly available spaces where interested members of the public could learn, experiment, and work collaboratively on projects related to plant-based proteins. They could offer access…

Plant-based icon Plant-Based R&D Workforce Crop development End product formulation & manufacturing Ingredient optimization Species-agnostic Academics Donors GFI Industry NGO’s Startups Ecosystem Research Science
Affordable animal-free omega-3 ingredients for alternative seafood and other alternative protein applications

In order to appeal to health-conscious consumers, alternative seafood products should contain similar omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA and EPA, content to conventional seafood. Animal-free omega-3 ingredients can be expensive…

Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based Investment Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Bioprocess design Crop development Host strain development Ingredient optimization Target molecule selection Seafood Industry Investors Startups Commercial Industry
Preventing oxidation of omega-3 fatty acids before and after addition to alternative seafood products

Deeper fundamental knowledge of the causes and prevention of oxidation of omega-3 fatty acids before, during, and after addition to alternative seafood products is needed to improve their nutritional and…

Cultivated icon Cultivated Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based End Products Investment Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Bioprocess design Crop development End product formulation & manufacturing Host strain development Ingredient optimization Target molecule selection Seafood Academics Industry Investors Startups Research Industry Science
Plants as a recombinant protein expression platform

Crop plants used as recombinant protein production hosts could offer benefits of minimal processing, cheaper equipment, and fewer downstream purification costs.

Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Crop development Ingredient optimization Species-agnostic Academics Industry Startups 2 – Early adoption Commercial Research Industry Science
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 icon Cultivated Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based End Products Production Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Cell culture media Crop development Feedstocks Ingredient optimization Scaffolding Species-agnostic GFI Industry 1 – Inception Commercial Ecosystem Industry Science
Plant-based ingredient analytical and characterization service

Plant-based food manufacturers often struggle with batch-to-batch ingredient inconsistency and variability between suppliers. Better analytical tools for predicting plant-based ingredient performance could improve manufacturing efficiency and create more transparent ingredient…

Plant-based icon Plant-Based Compliance End Products Investment Production R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Crop development End product formulation & manufacturing Ingredient optimization Species-agnostic Academics Industry Investors Startups Research Industry Science
Pooled procurement/group purchasing for ingredients and inputs

Many alternative protein companies use similar inputs, but individually lack the purchasing power to negotiate favorable contract terms. A pooled procurement/group purchasing mechanism for ingredients, inputs (growth factors, media, etc.),…

Cultivated icon Cultivated Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based Business Services Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Cell culture media Crop development Feedstocks Species-agnostic Industry NGO’s Startups Commercial Ecosystem Industry
Protein sequence, structure, and functionality database

There is a need for deeper fundamental research on the relationships between protein sequence, structure, functionality, and ultimately performance in plant-based food products. While several plant-based companies have claimed a…

Plant-based icon Plant-Based R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Crop development Ingredient optimization Species-agnostic Academics GFI Industry Investors NGO’s Startups Research Industry Science
Marketplace exchange platform for ingredients, inputs, & services

Connecting the buyers and sellers of the ingredients, inputs, and services needed to produce alternative proteins.

Cultivated icon Cultivated Fermentation icon Fermentation Plant-based icon Plant-Based Business Services R&D Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs Cell culture media Crop development End product formulation & manufacturing Feedstocks Scaffolding Species-agnostic GFI Industry Startups Commercial Ecosystem

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

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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.