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Billions Poured Into Global Sustainable Protein, with Record $5 Billion in 2021 Investment

FN Media Group Presents USA News Group News Commentary


Vancouver, BC – March 8, 2022 – USA News Group  –  Last year was a record-breaking year for the global sustainable protein industry, which raised a record $5 billion in disclosed investments in 2021. The record-breaking year saw financial movement across most sectors, including plant-based, fermented, and cell-based (or cultivated) alternatives to the more traditional animal proteins such as eggs, dairy, and meat. With its ongoing momentum, the sector is continuing in 2022 to gain new innovations from food tech developers that have garnered market attention, including Nepra Foods (CSE:NPRA) (OTCQB:NPRFF), Ingredion Incorporated (NYSE:INGR), Tattooed Chef, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTCF), Else Nutrition Holdings Inc. (TSX:BABY) (OTCQX:BABYF), and Nestlé S.A. (OTCPK:NSRGY).


Nepra Foods (CSE:NPRA) (OTC:NPRFF) hit the ground running, after an oversubscribed IPO in late 2021. Since then, their sales have exploded, through developing a proprietary product known as Textured Hemp ProteinTM (THP).


THP is a nutritious plant-based and allergen-free food, that’s currently used in wholesale ingredients and consumer packaged goods, such as Nepra’s PROPASTA™ line of ready-to-eat frozen meals, including its latest addition, a line of macaroni and cheese heat-and-eat meals—a category currently dominated by products containing gluten and dairy.


“Although we don’t consider ourselves a meat analogue company, the analogues we produce for our PROPASTA™ line of frozen entrees are unique in the industry,” said Nepra CEO David Wood. “While most everyone in this space is using pea, soy, gluten, and faba bean, our texturized hemp protein has superior flavor, texture, and, most importantly, nutrition.”


Hemp is known to provide an excellent source of lean plant-based protein, that’s rich in amino acids, a good source of iron, magnesium and manganese, and may prevent cardiovascular disease and cancer.


“We are taking hemp protein to the next level with our proprietary formulations that are perfectly designed for modern flexitarians who want to eat healthier but don’t want to sacrifice taste,” said Chadwick White, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Nepra Foods.


Made from hemp hearts, Nepra’s flagship N-50 Flour product has already brought the company early success to its ingredient business. Nepra’s innovative formulation improves the color and texture of gluten-free salty snacks like pretzels.


Through Q3 2021, sales of Nepra’s N-50 Flour flagship product grew 400%, and is growing in popularity with snackmakers in a growing list of some of America’s favorite healthy food snack brands.


Nepra aims to grow its wholesale ingredient business by 100%, as well as its B2B consultation business by 150%, in 2022.


According to Jim Zallie, CEO of Ingredion Incorporated (NYSE:INGR) changing consumer tastes have driven the creation of “more intimate relationships” between ingredient suppliers and food manufacturers.


Rapid shifts in these tastes and demands have brought consumer packaged goods (CPGs) manufacturers to lean more heavily on ingredient suppliers in order to get new products to market faster.


Prior to this monumental market shift, has obliterated previous relationship standards where food companies would be hesitant to source more than one ingredient from a single supplier. But times have changed, and now many CPG companies have dropped their R&D budgets, and then partner with groups like Ingredion or Nepra to generate these more intimate relationships.


“It’s a win for them, a win for us,” said Zallie. “We become a reliable supplier, a more intimate supplier. They take steps out of their manufacturing process.”


Demand for Ingredion’s more than 1,000 ingredients is hotter than ever, currently selling to most large CPG companies as well as smaller, local businesses around the globe. Their net sales rose $900 million in its 2021 fiscal year to $6.9 billion, as the company was able to also justify an increase in their ingredients’ pricing, resulting in two-thirds of the jump.


In 2022, Ingredion opened the year with an investment in chickpea-focused food tech company InnovoPro, which is expanding from dairy alternatives to additional markets like meat analogues and egg replacers.


Another innovation that’s drawn the investment of a multi-billion-dollar food giant, is the new partnership between Nestlé S.A. (OTC:NSRGY) and Netherlands-based Corbion to develop microalgae-based ingredients that can be added to animal-free foods to improve nutrition, taste, and sustainability for new products.


“We are actively exploring the use of microalgae as an alternative protein and micronutrient source for exciting plant-based products,” said Stefan Palzer, CRO for Nestlé. “Through the partnership with Corbion, we will be able to use great-tasting, nutritious microalgae-based ingredients to innovate across our different product categories.”


Seen as a clean source of protein, fat, and nutrients, microalgae tread lightly on the planet during manufacturing, thanks to fermentation technology. They’ve been shown to offer significant health benefits to vegan-friendly food products. Nestlé and Corbion will develop microalgae products with lower carbon, water, and land footprints than other more conventional ingredients.


During the last 10 days of 2021, another plant-based foods leader Tattooed Chef, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTCF) completed the acquisition of Belmont Confections, Inc.—a specialist company in the development and manufacturing of a variety of snack bars.


As per the deal, the Belmont acquisition gives Tattooed Chef a 47,000 square foot facility in Youngstown, Ohio, where the buyer intends to expand into a new category, with plans to launch new Tattooed Chef branded plant based bars in 2022.


“We see an opportunity to leverage our innovation expertise to bring great tasting, plant based options to the bar sector,” said Sarah Galletti, Tattooed Chef Chief Creative Officer. “We believe we can create and bring new types of bars to the market, disrupting a category that is in need of more innovation and exciting product development.”


For those looking to provide similar nutritional values to babies, toddlers and children, Else Nutrition Holdings Inc. (TSX:BABY) (OTC:BABYF) recently concluded a successful Preclinical Study along the way to bringing the world’s first clean label whole-food, plant-based and soy-free infant formula to market.


“This is a massive step forward for the Company,” said Hamutal Yitzhak, CEO & Co-Founder of Else Nutrition. “Since inception, our vision has been to fill this major gap in the market, and to bring a clean label whole-food, plant-based, soy-free infant formula to millions of families worldwide. These results mark further validation of our formulation, as we continue to push ahead in seeking FDA approval.”


In its toddler nutrition category, Else has established a potential distribution pathway to nearly 30,000 retail outlets, having added 4 new flavors in early February—Vanilla, Chocolate, Mango & Chia, Banana & Chia.


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USA News Group




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