PreScouter, a Chicago-based research intelligence firm, has released a new report providing a comprehensive market analysis & IP landscape of meat, dairy, and egg alternatives. As the demand for plant-based foods increases and is expected to reach 15.6 billion USD by the end of 2026, PreScouter puts this report into circulation to help companies better position themselves within the plant-based protein market and better focus R&D efforts in areas with the most promise.
"Plant-based protein is not only staying in the market but is expected to expand rapidly in the next few years," notes Victoria Yeung, project architect, and report co-author, PreScouter. Consumer interest is growing due to improvements in taste, texture, and nutritional values, as well as the price competitiveness of these products, adds Yeung.
The report attempts to identify key trends that describe the focus and progress of innovation related to the various plant-based protein segments and highlights key observations regarding the development of intellectual property in each of these domains.
Analyst and report co-author, Jorge Hurtado notes, "Customers are looking for products that offer limited environmental impact during production and with nutritional benefits comparable to animal protein with less fat and cholesterol, which translates into consumers' healthy choices. As the demand for meat substitutes has surged, we are even witnessing traditional food companies financially supporting emerging plant-based companies. That is the relevance of today's plant-based market."
Key findings include:
In the US, plant-based milk is the most developed category with the greatest dollar sales out of all plant-based categories in 2021.
The plant-based egg is the least developed but the fastest-growing category.
The IP analysis indicated a great amount of patenting activity in the plant-based meat space, followed by plant-based dairy and egg. Texturizing ingredients or methods, and clean labeling is where the greatest focus is.