Plant-based eggs: The next big thing in the alternative protein market

Plant-based eggs may be the fastest growing segment in plant-based foods, but hacking the formula for a perfect egg substitute is proving a hurdle. Are alt-protein startups up for the challenge?

Like meat, eggs as a food product is increasingly under scrutiny for its environmentally harmful farming practices. Intensive egg production is detrimental to animal welfare and produces significant toxic effects on land and water. Yet the world is eating more eggs than ever, especially in fast-developing countries where eggs are an affordable source of protein. Amid such competing needs, plant-based eggs, like plant-based meat alternatives, increasingly offer a sizable market opportunity.

In fact, the growth potential is huge, according to a report by The Good Food Institute (GFI). The not-for-profit advocate of plant-based foods says the plant-based egg alternatives market is projected to reach $1.5bn by 2026, based on 5.8% annual growth from 2016 to 2026. In the US alone, that market was worth just $10m in 2019, which is already more than triple what it was in 2017 – the fastest-growing of all plant-based foods in that period. 

On a global

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