Vegan food market set to grow 100-fold to $ 1.4 trillion by 2050, says finance giant Credit Suisse

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Sales of plant-based alternatives to meat and milk could increase 100-fold to $ 1.4 trillion by 2050, according to a new report compiled by global investment giant Credit Suisse. Title “The world food system: identifying sustainable solutions”, the report examined the current global food system and explained the large-scale changes needed to support the growth of the world’s human population, which is expected to reach nearly 10 billion by 2050. In its 100-page report, Credit Suisse identified the need to shift to a plant-based diet and the plethora of investment opportunities available in companies working to create a more sustainable food system.

The report identifies animal agriculture as one of the main contributors to climate change, explaining that more than 50 percent of emissions generated by the global food system are linked to raising animals for food, whether through land use, animal feed, land conversion or methane production. “A shift to a plant-based diet seems inevitable, in our view, if the global food system is to become more sustainable,” says Eugène Klerk, author of the report and managing director of Credit Suisse in the Securities Research division.

To facilitate change, Credit Suisse has urged reform of government systems that support the production and trade of unhealthy and environmentally harmful foods. Currently, tomatoes, soybeans and peanuts are the three most taxed food products in the world, while four of the ten most incentive (or subsidized) agricultural products are meat products (pork, poultry, mutton and bovine).

Investing in a vegan future

A herbal change could prove profitable for investors looking to support a more sustainable world, according to Credit Suisse. The report gives a conservative estimate that vegan milk will hold 50 percent of the milk market share by 2050, a figure it says could reach 80 percent in that time frame at best. “A high share is not unlikely when we realize that diets associated with a sustainable world call for lower milk consumption in order to meet longer term climate change and health goals,” said Klerk.

The report’s predictions for plant-based meat are slightly less optimistic, as researchers believe adoption of alternatives to animal flesh will be slower, with plant-based meat alternatives expected to hold 25 percent. market share by 2050 and 50 percent at best. . If best-case scenarios occur for plant-based milk and meat substitutes, the report predicts sales of plant-based foods to reach $ 143 billion by 2030, multiplying by 100 to $ 1.4 trillion. dollars by 2050.

Although there are currently around 600 small and private companies currently operating in the plant-based food business, Credit Suisse expects traditional players, such as Danone, Nestlé, meat companies Brazilian women and others continue to evolve their portfolios to include more herbal products. products, presenting investment opportunities in everything from small plant-based food companies to large multinational conglomerates to ingredient suppliers developing specific components for plant-based foods, and more.

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Sales of plant-based foods in the United States

Credit Suisse’s prediction that herbal change is “inevitable” is already materializing in many parts of the world, including the United States. While sales of plant-based foods in the United States have been increasing for years, COVID-19 has given a boost to sales of plant-based meat and milk. At the start of the pandemic, the virus ravaged most of the country’s largest meat companies, exposing the overcrowded conditions workers must endure. Tyson, JBS, Smithfield and other meat giants have closed slaughterhouses for a time to mitigate the spread of diseases that have contributed to a nationwide meat shortage, clearing the way for consumers to fill the void with plant-based meat.

While sales of plant-based foods were already increasing before the pandemic, in mid-March 2020 – the panic buying peak of the COVID-19 pandemic – data from SPINS shows that food sales Plant-based foods were up 90% from sales over the same period in 2019. Over the next four weeks, sales of plant-based foods soared 27%, topping 35 % of total food retail sales. During the peak buying period, vegan meat sales climbed 148% and continued to grow 61% over the next four weeks, growing twice as fast as animal meat sales.

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U.S. consumers maintained their interest in plant-based foods throughout 2020, which saw sales of plant-based alternatives to animal products increase 27% to $ 7 billion according to the U.S. consumers. Sales figures compiled by SPINS on behalf of the Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA) business group and advocacy nonprofit The Good Food Institute (GFI).

The effect of the pandemic on eating habits, combined with growing consumer awareness of the environmental impact of animal agriculture, is creating that inevitable tipping point, which Credit Suisse says will propel the food-based industry. plants to new heights in the decades to come. “The data tells us unequivocally that we are experiencing a fundamental change as an ever-increasing number of consumers choose foods that taste great and improve their health by incorporating plant-based foods into their diets”, PBFA Senior Director of Julie Emmett’s retail partnerships mentioned.

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Tanya S. Norvell