40Research opportunities
44Commercial whitespaces
39Ecosystem support needs
Key: Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based
Opportunity Production platform Solution category Value chain segment Technology sector Maturity level
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…

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem Investment 2 – Early adoption
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.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem End Products Investment Production End product formulation & manufacturing 1 – Inception
Platform for facilitating matchmaking between funders and funding-seekers

It can be challenging and time-intensive for startups and researchers to find funders that are interested in their technology area, technological maturity level, fundraising stage, location, type of funding sought,…

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Ecosystem Investment
Infrastructure loan fund

The success of early-days products has demonstrated strong consumer interest, but investment is needed to enable alternative protein supply chain companies to build out the infrastructure needed to capitalize on…

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Investment Production 2 – Early adoption
Infrastructure and equipment leasing fund

Infrastructure leasing for production and processing facilities as well as capital equipment would enable alternative protein companies to rapidly expand capacity without large upfront capital investments. Having leasing funds and…

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Investment Production Raw Materials, Ingredients, & Inputs
Investor conference for LPs, funds of funds, corporate VCs, family offices, and money managers

Events targeted at promoting opportunities in alternative protein investment via specialized funds could facilitate and diversify investment.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Ecosystem Investment 1 – Inception
Options for factoring financing for alternative proteins

Increased access to factoring financing instruments would help alternative protein companies improve their cash conversion cycle.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Ecosystem Investment 1 – Inception
Expanding alternative protein accelerator programs

More alternative protein capacity—different geographies, expertise, and programming—is needed in the incubator and accelerator landscape to de-risk venture capital investment.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem Investment 3 – Widespread proliferation
Expanding corporate investment capabilities within strategic industry partners

Corporations can build out venture capital arms—including building dedicated incubators and opening their facilities—to facilitate strategic partnerships.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem Investment 2 – Early adoption
Deal flow and fundraising platform for investors beyond the impact investment community

Investment platforms are needed for deal flow and coordinating hand-offs from pre-seed (angels and accelerators), seed/early-stage, and growth/later-stage investors and acquirers.

Icon cultivated Cultivated Icon fermentation Fermentation Icon plant based Plant-Based Commercial Ecosystem Investment 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

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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.