Scouting call

We invest in
Proofs of Concept
and Round Seeds

Call open

42. New alternative protein source based on algae for application in dairy or vegetable drinks.


The consumption of meat is very inefficient when it comes to transforming natural resources. According to the FAO, agriculture, livestock, forestry and other land uses contribute 24% to greenhouse gas emissions compared to 35% produced by power generation or 21% produced by industry.

On the other hand, the world demand for meat products, if it continues as before, would increase to 70% in 2050 due to population growth (up to 9.6 billion).

Rising wealth and urbanization call for a change that advocated the development of alternative plant products for direct consumption by humans.

Concern for health and the need to incorporate healthy consumption habits and diets that Covid 19 has exacerbated, concern for the consumption of sustainably produced food and its relationship with the consequences of climate change and the influence of social trends , changes in habits, fashions, social networks … that have led to the growth of vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian consumers (with a growth of 10% in 2020 according to the consulting firm Contes), causing the profound changes that consumption is experiencing habitual of meat (-1.2%), milk of animal origin (-5.5%), fish (-13.1%) in the last 5 years (according to MAPA 2019 reports) have led to its great boost and acceleration, which is considered as the food development platform with the greatest future projection.

Despite the wide range of ABV categories that include alternative meat, vegetable drinks, yogurt, cheese, eggs, ice cream, butter, ready meals, chocolate and confectionery, all of which are exclusively vegetable-based, their degree of penetration into the market is very unequal and only three categories: vegetable milk substitute drinks of animal origin, meat substitute preparations for animal meat and yogurt, reach consumption rates that exceed 50% of consumers who declare themselves habitual. This challenge seeks solutions based on new sources of protein such as algae mainly or other equivalents, with a solubility and ability to be incorporated into dairy and / or vegetable beverages at low costs.

Possible approaches

– Any technology capable of producing food quality proteins in an efficient, sustainable and economically viable way to be used in solutions for the production of dairy and / or vegetable beverages.

– Other possible sources of raw material such as legumes, laboratory / cultivated protein and textured proteins, on a dry or wet basis, will also be considered.

Solutions not of interest

  • Products that contain organoleptic attributes unpleasant for the consumer.
  • Silver solutions from the need to apply EFSA accreditation through the NOVEL FOOD regulation.