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Better Bioeconomy Weekly - Mar 13th 2023 🌏
Alt protein investments are shifting away from the US while Europe and APAC lead the way.
WORD BUFFET 📖
Alt protein investments shifting away from the US, Europe and APAC lead the way 🌏
Overall ~11% of $100 billion climate tech funding in the last 3 years went to alt protein. Alt protein sector may require over $40 billion in annual investment to sustain adoption, and reports suggest it is currently underfunded.
For the first time, most alt protein investments went to non-American startups with 58% of venture funding going to companies in Europe, APAC, LatAm and MENA. Funding in the US dropped significantly (-63%), while Europe and APAC are up.
APAC has been the fastest-growing region in 2022, up 43% year-on-year to $562 million. In the next few years, China's protein demand will increase in the coming years, providing a promising market for protein diversification. A CAGR of 19.99% is predicted from 2023 to 2027.
It’s time for investors to have realistic expectations of sustainable food 🧐
There is a disconnect between expectations and reality in the sustainable food industry, with some startups being valued like tech companies despite simply producing food for people to eat.
Beyond Meat was overvalued at a market cap of $14 billion, with a more reasonable valuation being in the range of $900 million to $2.3 billion based on historical norms for CPG food companies.
Setting realistic expectations is crucial to avoid portraying companies in the sustainable food ecosystem as failures, even if they are making progress towards a more sustainable food system.
Agrifood tech funding dropped 44% in 2022 but there are silver linings 📉
Agrifood tech funding decreased 44% YoY in 2022 to $29.6bn, due to the impact of war, inflation, and supply chain disruptions.
However, four categories related to climate tech and efficiency experienced an increase in funding, including Bioenergy & Biomaterials, Ag Biotech, Novel Farming Systems, and Farm Management Software, Sensing & IoT.
The lack of mega deals was a major driver of the big declines downstream, with at least one deal of over $1 billion every year since 2016 except in 2020, and the biggest deal in 2022 being a $768 million Series E.
6 female scientists making the world more sustainable 👩🔬👩🏻🔬👩🏼🔬👩🏽🔬👩🏾🔬👩🏿🔬
Female scientists have made significant contributions to sustainability and environmental research.
Dr. Jane Goodall, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Dr. Katherine Hayhoe, and Dr. Kimberley Miner are some of the notable female scientists who have made groundbreaking contributions to their respective fields.
Their research and advocacy work have led to important insights on climate change, conservation, and the protection of the world's ecosystems.
Global hunger is expected to soar as countries are forced to choose between repaying debt and feeding the population 🙁
Global public debt, the highest in 60 years, is causing a spike in food insecurity, particularly in low-income countries where around 60% are facing a debt crisis.
Unsustainable and inequitable global food systems are deepening the debt crisis, creating a debt and hunger loop that forces countries to choose between feeding people and repaying debt.
The report suggests solutions such as debt relief, repairing food system injustices, and democratizing financial and food system governance to reduce the impact of food systems on increasing global debt.
How synthetic biology can help mitigate agricultural contributions to climate change 🧬
Synthetic biology can offer alternative, sustainable solutions to traditional agricultural practices that contribute to climate change. This includes developing biological fertilizers, fixing nitrogen using microbes, and creating more resistant crops.
DNA synthesis technologies are critical to the advancement of this type of science, and newer methods like enzymatic DNA synthesis are more sustainable and less harmful to the environment.
While there are ongoing challenges in scaling up synthetic biology for commercial production and mitigating the risks of unintended harm, the potential for bio-manufactured products to improve food quality, safety, and nutritional value, as well as create greener alternatives for a range of products, is endless.
How food upcycling can combat environmental degradation and food insecurity ♻️
Food waste is a major problem that has severe environmental, social, and economic consequences. Roughly one-third of all food produced globally goes to waste, costing an estimated US$1 trillion annually and contributing to greenhouse gas emissions.
Food upcycling can help combat food waste by converting scraps and remnants into fresh, consumable items, reducing the volume of waste in landfills, and minimizing greenhouse gas emissions. It also holds the potential for economic gains through the creation of new products.
Creative food upcycling examples include using broccoli stalks to make hummus, vegetable scraps to make stock, fruit peels to make a snack, stale bread to make bread pudding, and leftover smoothies to make popsicles.
SOCIAL FEAST 📱
Interviews with inspiring women who are building a better world and a more sustainable future 💪🏾
Green Queen Media celebrates leading climate women from all around the world and across various industries every day.
These women are using their talent, skills, and experience to build a better world and a more sustainable future.
In honour of International Women's Day, Green Queen Media is re-sharing inspiring interviews with incredible women who are fighting the global climate crisis.
21 trends spotted at ExpoWest 👀
Alternative milk options are becoming increasingly diverse.
Mushrooms are being used in a variety of ways and in numerous products.
Beans are being used as the main ingredient in many crunchy snacks.
Consumer acceptance of new technologies and societal awakening 😴
Animal agriculture is the biggest contributor to food system problems like deforestation, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions.
Change is mandatory for a sustainable future, and innovative solutions like plant-based and cultivated foods can help reduce environmental footprints.
While tailwinds like growing awareness of climate change and societal awakening support sustainable food movements, headwinds like consumer attitudes towards technology and preference for traditional foods may slow adoption.
SVB’s collapse and the uncertain future for food tech startups and VC funding 😕
Silicon Valley Bank’s (SVB) collapse will have ripple effects on startups all over the world, especially food tech startups.
Nearly 50% of all venture capital-backed US startups are exposed to SVB, and most of the deposits are uninsured.
Startups are concerned about paying employees, receiving payments, paying bills, and making orders, and are worried about the future of their funding and investors.
EAR FOOD 🎵
Discussion with the author of THAT Bloomberg article titled: “Fake Meat Was Supposed to Save the World. It Became Just Another Fad.” 🔥
Do the grocery store sales figures from 2022 represent the whole sector? What about food service numbers?
Can Deena make a claim about unhealthy products while not distinguishing them as healthier?
What about taking into account the environmental, food insecurity and national security benefits that will push adoption and government investment? Isn’t it too early to announce the sector as a fad?
Exploring the philosophies, potentials, and funding of regenerative agriculture 🌾
Regenerative agriculture is a set of practices that aims to improve the land while cultivating crops and livestock, rather than depleting it like industrial practices often do, but it lacks a formal definition.
Regenerative agriculture has the potential to address global challenges like climate change and supply chain issues related to war and COVID, and can learn from indigenous agricultural practices.
To create a more regenerative system, corporations can work with farmers, and funding the transition to regenerative agriculture is an important consideration, along with the question of whether we need regenerative agriculture certification.
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