New Zealand agrifood research organisation, Food HQ, has released a new report detailing the level of government investment in the alternative protein sector. The report aims to compare the overall health of the sector in New Zealand with that of other countries.
While Australia achieved some excellent results in the analysis, New Zealand is lagging behind, with “no specific strategy, targets or goals related to the role of alternative proteins within its agrifood sector.”
Food HQ CEO Dr Abby Thompson said the report “does not seek to judge” each country’s specific strategies or investments, but aims to inform the New Zealand government’s decision making in regards to the rapidly growing alternative protein sector.
The countries included in the report (in order of ranking) are Singapore, The Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Israel, the UK, Ireland, New Zealand and Sweden.
The report provides an assessment of not only the level of government funding in alternative proteins, but also the sector’s prominence in government strategy, policy, regulation and infrastructure.
While Singapore and The Netherlands scored well across the board, garnering a five star ranking, Australia achieved four stars and was let down only by a less friendly regulatory framework and longer “timelines for outcomes.” New Zealand achieved only one star, scoring poorly across all categories. This was attributed largely to slow decision making because of the New Zealand economy’s strong reliance on traditional protein production.
Although seen as a leader in the alternative proteins sector, Israel scored only three stars. This was put down to a lack of articulation of the alternative protein sector’s role in national food strategy, while its overall success was attributed to an “established general innovation ecosystem and not… a specific government focus on this sector.”
The report also looks at key drivers for investment in alternative proteins, including economic, environmental and food security factors, and analyses the different sectors of the industry, from plant-based, cell-based and precision fermentation to insect and fungi proteins.
You can view the full report, including a detailed breakdown of Australia’s alternative protein sector, here.