GVR Report cover Alternative Protein Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Alternative Protein Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report, By Product (Plant Protein, Microbe-based Protein, Insect Protein), By Application (Food & Beverages, Infant Formulations, Clinical Nutrients, Animal Feed), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2024 - 2030

  • Report ID: GVR-4-68040-197-4
  • Number of Report Pages: 100
  • Format: PDF, Horizon Databook
  • Historical Range: 2018 - 2023
  • Forecast Period: 2024 - 2030 
  • Industry: Consumer Goods

Alternative Protein Market Size & Trends

The global alternative protein market size was estimated at USD 15.29 billion in 2023 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.2% from 2024 to 2030. The rising demand for plant-based alternatives in food and beverages reflects a shifting trend toward plant-centric diets, with innovative product offerings contributing to the market's expansion. This growth underscores a global movement toward more sustainable and plant-focused food choices. Moreover, the substantial growth in social media followings emphasizes the increasing demand for and interest in plant-based dining experiences, underscoring the pivotal role of digital platforms in shaping consumer choices within the alternative protein industry.

U.S. Alternative Protein Market size and growth rate, 2024 - 2030

With growing awareness of the health benefits associated with plant-based diets, there is a robust opportunity for alternative proteins to be positioned as a vital component of a nutritious and balanced lifestyle. As individuals seek alternatives to traditional meat products, there is a vast market space for innovative plant-based protein offerings with various health benefits that cater to diverse taste preferences.

Alternative proteins such as plant proteins inherently contribute to reduced environmental impact compared to their animal-based counterparts. Leveraging this sustainability aspect provides a strategic avenue for market players to appeal to environmentally conscious consumers. Collaborative efforts within the industry to further enhance sustainable practices, from sourcing raw materials to production processes, can help reach a broader customer base that values both personal health and planetary well-being.

Continued investment in research and development (R&D) can lead to the development of plant-based alternatives that mimic the taste and texture of traditional meat and introduce novel and appealing flavor profiles. The culinary versatility of plant-based proteins opens doors for chefs, restaurants, and food manufacturers to craft a diverse array of plant-based dishes, appealing to committed vegetarians as well as flexitarians and meat enthusiasts willing to explore plant-based options.

Market Concentration & Characteristics

The alternative protein industry has witnessed remarkable product innovation across various categories. Plant-based meats have seen advancements in taste, texture, and nutritional profile, with companies utilizing innovative ingredients and processing techniques to closely mimic the sensory experience of conventional meat products. Insect-based foods have emerged as a novel protein source, with companies exploring creative formulations and flavor profiles to make them more palatable and appealing to consumers.

Alternative Protein Market Concentration & Characteristics

In the rapidly growing alternative protein industry, merger and acquisition (M&A) activities have been prevalent as companies seek to strengthen their market positions, expand their product portfolios, and gain access to new technologies and distribution channels. Additionally, partnerships between traditional food companies and alternative protein producers have become increasingly common, enabling mutual benefits such as leveraging existing supply chains and expertise.

Regulations play a significant role in shaping the development and growth of the alternative protein industry, influencing areas such as food safety, labeling requirements, ingredient approvals, and market access. While regulations can assure consumers of product safety and quality, they can also present challenges for companies operating in this space. Striking a balance between ensuring consumer protection and fostering innovation is crucial for regulatory bodies. For example, regulatory approval processes for novel ingredients or production methods, such as cultured meat, can be lengthy and complex, potentially hindering market entry and investment.

Product substitutes for the alternative protein industry include traditional animal-derived proteins such as beef, pork, poultry, fish, dairy, and eggs. These conventional protein sources have been staples in diets worldwide for centuries and continue to dominate the global protein market. Additionally, there are also other non-meat alternatives, such as legumes, nuts, and seeds, which have been consumed for their protein content for millennia.

Product Insights

Plant-based protein accounted for a share of 89.8% of the global revenue in 2023. Plant-based proteins are being investigated for their role in managing chronic conditions, supporting immune health, and addressing specific nutritional deficiencies. The pharmaceutical industry's interest in plant-based proteins not only broadens the application scope of these proteins but also elevates their perceived value as functional and therapeutic ingredients. The surge in demand for plant-based protein products is evident in the wide range of available plant-based protein supplements, shakes, and snacks. Fitness enthusiasts, including athletes and bodybuilders, incorporate these products into their dietary routines to meet their protein requirements while aligning with their ethical and environmental values. 

The insect protein market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 16.9% from 2024 to 2030. Increasing concerns about sustainability and the environmental impact of traditional livestock farming have fueled interest in alternative protein sources such as insects, which require significantly fewer resources to produce. For instance, companies such as Entomo Farms have capitalized on this trend by pioneering large-scale insect farming operations, providing a sustainable source of protein. Insects are highly nutritious and rich in protein, healthy fats, and essential vitamins and minerals, making them an attractive option for health-conscious consumers. This nutritional profile has led to the development of innovative insect-based products, such as cricket flour from companies such as Bitty Foods, which can be used as a sustainable protein source in various food applications.

Application Insights

The food & beverages industry accounted for a share of 59.2% in terms of global revenue in 2023. This can be mainly attributed to several factors including the rising adoption of vegan diets and the prevalence of lactose intolerant conditions. An increasing awareness among consumers about the adverse health effects of meat consumption is driving a shift toward veganism, resulting in a decline in meat consumption. For instance, in the UK, Office for National Statistics data revealed that consumer spending on meat decreased from approximately 20.78 billion British pounds in 2020 to 20.54 billion British pounds in 2021.

Global Alternative Protein Market share and size, 2023

The demand for alternative protein in the animal feed industry is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.0% from 2024 to 2030. The driving force behind the growing demand for alternative proteins in the animal feed industry is a convergence of various factors that align with evolving consumer preferences, sustainability concerns, and advancements in nutritional research. One key factor is the increasing awareness among pet owners and livestock producers about the environmental impact of traditional animal-based protein sources, such as meat and fishmeal.

Moreover, the companies are introducing various alternative protein products for animal feed that further propel the market growth. For instance, in June 2023, BENEO introduced a new range of high-quality and non-GMO vegetable proteins for pet food manufacturers. The demand for plant-based pet food is growing, and BENEO's toolbox of plant-based proteins, which feature rice protein, vital wheat gluten, and faba bean protein concentrate, provide nutritional and technical benefits.

Regional Insights

The North America alternative protein market accounted for 37.7% of the global revenue share in 2023. Increasing consumer awareness of environmental sustainability and animal welfare has led to a shift towards plant-based and alternative protein sources. For example, the rising demand for plant-based meat products, such as Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, showcases consumers' willingness to embrace alternative protein options for ethical and environmental reasons. The growing demand for protein-rich foods due to health and wellness trends, combined with the rise of flexitarian, vegetarian, and vegan diets, has created a substantial market opportunity for alternative protein products. Products like oat milk from companies like Oatly and Almond milk from Califia Farms are excellent examples of how non-animal-based proteins fulfill the demands of consumers pursuing plant-based dietary choices.

U.S. Alternative Protein Market

The alternative protein market in the U.S. is projected to grow at a CAGR of 7.7% from 2024 to 2030. The growth is mainly driven by several key trends and factors influencing consumer preferences. One of the notable trends is the growing popularity of plant-based proteins due to taste and texture enhancements. These improvements, coupled with changes in consumer diets and increased environmental awareness, have contributed to the rise in demand for plant-based proteins.

The Canada alternative protein market was valued at USD 412 million in 2023. Canada's strong tradition of agricultural innovation and research has fostered the development of alternative protein sources such as pulses (e.g., lentils, and chickpeas), which are abundant in the country. For example, companies like Prairie Fava have capitalized on Canada's pulse crops to produce protein-rich fava bean ingredients for alternative protein products.

Alternative Protein Market Trends, by Region, 2024 - 2030

Asia Pacific Alternative Protein Market

The alternative protein market in Asia Pacific is projected to grow at a CAGR of 9.2% from 2024 to 2030. Rising consumer interest in sustainability and ethical consumption is driving the demand for alternative protein sources. For instance, the growing popularity of plant-based meat products like Omnipork in the region reflects this shifting consumer preference towards sustainable and ethical food options.

The China alternative protein market accounted for a revenue share of 34.8% in 2023. The country's substantial population and rapid urbanization have led to increased demand for protein, creating a significant market opportunity for alternative protein products. As a result, Chinese companies like Whole Perfect Food are investing in plant-based meat products to cater to this growing demand.

The alternative protein market in Japan is projected to grow at a CAGR of 9.2% from 2024 to 2030. The environmental sustainability and food security concerns have garnered attention in Japan, leading to an increased interest in alternative protein sources. Government support for sustainable food production and initiatives to reduce reliance on animal protein have created a conducive environment for the industry’s growth. For example, collaborations between the private sector and research institutions have led to the development of new technologies for producing plant-based proteins.

Europe Alternative Protein Market

The alternative protein market in Europe is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.0% from 2024 to 2030. The European Commission has been actively exploring ways to enhance the production of plant proteins in the region. This includes reviewing supply and demand and assessing the possibilities for developing production without harming the environment. Protein crops are known for fixing atmospheric nitrogen in the soil, contributing to a more sustainable nutrient cycle.

The Germany alternative protein market accounted for a revenue share of 23.4% of the Europe market in 2023. One of the primary reasons is the changing dietary preferences of the German population. The number of vegans and vegetarians is increasing, with over 13% of the population following a vegetarian diet and about 2.7% adhering to a vegan lifestyle. Moreover, nearly 30% of the population identifies as flexitarian, indicating a preference for plant-based diets with occasional meat consumption. This shift is reflected in the growing number of vegan and vegetarian restaurants, particularly in urban areas like Berlin, known for its diverse and innovative food landscape.

The alternative protein market in the UK is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.4% from 2024 to 2030. The industry has seen a growing shift from animal-based diets, driven by factors like health awareness and environmental sustainability. Young and urban populations who believe consuming less meat is better for health and the environment are the primary consumers of plant-based foods. In 2022, there was a notable increase in the per capita consumption of soy protein, and the UK government's promotion of a healthy lifestyle has further boosted this trend.

The France alternative protein market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.9% from 2024 to 2030. The plant protein industry in France has experienced significant growth in recent years, primarily driven by shifting consumer preferences toward sustainable and plant-based diets. With increasing awareness of environmental and health issues, a growing number of French consumers are actively looking for alternatives to animal-based proteins, contributing to the rising popularity of alternative proteins.

Middle East & Africa Alternative Protein Market

The alternative protein market in the Middle East & Africa is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.2% from 2024 to 2030. The region has been witnessing a significant consumer shift towards health & wellness in recent years, with increased focus on protein intake, meal replacement, and weight management, among others. The growing middle-class population and rising consumer disposable income levels are expected to influence the regional market growth in the forthcoming years.

The Saudi Arabia alternative protein market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.7% from 2024 to 2030. Collaboration between local and international food industry players, as well as investment in technological innovation for alternative protein production, can contribute to market growth. For instance, partnerships between Saudi food companies and global alternative protein suppliers or technology providers may lead to the introduction of diverse and innovative alternative protein products in the market.

Key Alternative Protein Company Insights

Industry players are focusing on R&D activities and on diversifying their portfolio to launch new and innovative alternative protein products.

Key Alternative Protein Companies:

The following are the leading companies in the alternative protein market. These companies collectively hold the largest market share and dictate industry trends. Financials, strategy maps & products of these alternative protein are analyzed to map the supply network.

  • ADM
  • Cargill Inc.
  • Lightlife Foods, Inc.
  • Impossible Foods Inc.
  • International Flavors & Fragrances, Inc.
  • Ingredion Inc.
  • Kerry Group
  • Glanbia plc
  • Bunge Limited
  • Axiom Foods Inc.
  • Tate & Lyle PLC
  • SunOpta Inc.
  • Glanbia plc
  • AGT Food and Ingredients
  • Emsland Group

Recent Developments

  • In December 2022, Bunge announced a USD 550 million investment to construct a fully integrated soy protein concentrate (SPC) and textured soy protein concentrate (TSPC) facility. The facility will be built adjacent to and integrated with Bunge's soybean processing plant in Indiana, U.S. The construction is set to commence in the first quarter of 2023, with a commissioning date expected in mid-2025. This initiative will create approximately 70 full-time jobs and is projected to process an additional 4.5 million bushels of soybeans. The primary goal of this facility is to address the growing demand for key ingredients in plant-based foods, processed meat, pet food, and feed products.

  • In August 2022, ADM announced a partnership with Benson Hill, an agricultural technology company, to scale its soy ingredients to cater to the growing demand for plant-based proteins. As part of the partnership, ADM processed and commercialized its proprietary ingredients derived from Benson Hill's Ultra-High Protein soybeans through an exclusive North American licensing partnership. The collaboration scaled innovative ingredients enabled by Benson Hill genetics, featuring less-processed proteins with significant water and carbon sustainability benefits. The collaboration was aimed at creating a pathway toward commercial-scale production of higher-value alternative protein products.

  • In September 2021, Ingredion Incorporated announced the launch of pulse-based ingredient solutions with excellent taste, nutrition, and functionality to help manufacturers deliver on increasing consumer demand for delicious plant protein-rich food in the U.S. and Canada. The product line included VITESSENCE Prista P 155 pea protein concentrate and VITESSENCE Prista P 360 faba bean protein concentrate. Through the launch, the company aimed to expand its plant-based protein segment

Alternative Protein Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2024

USD 16.52 billion

Revenue forecast in 2030

USD 26.52 billion

Growth rate

CAGR of 8.2% from 2024 to 2030

Actual data

2018 - 2023

Forecast period

2024 - 2030

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million/billion and CAGR from 2024 to 2030

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Product, application, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Central & South America; Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; Mexico; Germany; UK; France; Italy; China; India; Japan; Australia & New Zealand; Brazil; South Africa

Key companies profiled

ADM; Cargill Inc.; Lightlife Foods, Inc.; Impossible Foods Inc.; International Flavors & Fragrances, Inc.; Ingredion Inc.; Kerry Group; Glanbia plc; Bunge Limited; Axiom Foods Inc.; Tate & Lyle PLC; SunOpta Inc.; Glanbia plc; AGT Food and Ingredients; Emsland Group.

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Global Alternative Protein Market Report Segmentation

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2018 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global alternative protein market report based on source, product application, and region:

Global Alternative Protein Market Report Segmentation

  • Product Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • Plant Proteins

      • Cereals

        • Wheat

          • Wheat Protein Concentrates

          • Wheat Protein Isolates

          • Textured Wheat Protein

          • Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein

          • HMEC/HMMA Wheat Protein

        • Rice

          • Rice Protein Isolates

          • Rice Protein Concentrates

          • Hydrolyzed Rice Protein

          • Others

        • Oats

          • Oat Protein Concentrates

          • Oat Protein Isolates

          • Hydrolyzed Oat Protein

          • Others

      • Legumes

        • Soy

          • Soy Protein Concentrates

          • Soy Protein Isolates

          • Textured Soy Protein

          • Hydrolyzed Soy Protein

          • HMEC/HMMA Soy Protein

        • Pea

          • Pea Protein Concentrates

          • Pea Protein Isolates

          • Textured Pea Protein

          • Hydrolyzed Pea Protein

          • HMEC/HMMA Pea Protein

        • Lupine

        • Chickpea

        • Others

      • Roots

        • Potato

          • Potato Protein Concentrate

          • Potato Protein Isolate

        • Maca

        • Others

      • Ancient Grains

        • Ancient Wheat

        • Quinoa

        • Sorghum

        • Amaranth

        • Chia

        • Millet

        • Others

      • Nuts & Seeds

        • Canola

          • Canola Protein Isolates

          • Hydrolyzed Canola Protein

          • Others

        • Almond

        • Flaxseeds

        • Others

    • Microbe-based Protein

      • Algae

      • Bacteria

      • Yeast

      • Fungi

    • Insect Protein

      • Coleoptera

      • Lepidoptera

      • Hymenoptera

      • Orthoptera

      • Hemiptera

      • Diptera

      • Others

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • Food & Beverages

      • Bakery & Confectionary

      • Beverages

      • Breakfast Cereals

      • Dairy Alternatives (cheese, desserts, snacks, others)

      • Dietary Supplements/Weight Management

      • Meat Alternatives & Extenders

      • Snacks

      • Sports Nutrition

      • Others

    • Infant Formulations

    • Clinical Nutrition

    • Animal Feed

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

      • Mexico

    • Europe

      • UK

      • Germany

      • France

      • Italy

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • Japan

      • India

      • Australia & New Zealand

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

      • South Africa

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