Plant-Based Food Market Races Towards $162 Billion In Value

A new report by Bloomberg Intelligence (BI) has found that the plant-based meat and dairy sectors are poised for explosive growth — with the market estimated to exceed $162 billion in value within the next decade.

It suggests that sales for plant-based meat and dairy alternatives will outpace conventional products, driven by innovation, production capacity, lower retail prices and consumer acceptance.

The report also highlights brands such as Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods and Oatly, as helping to propel the sector by driving awareness via retail and restaurant partnerships. In addition, growing consumer demand for healthy and sustainable options is also acting as a catalyst for growth.

“Food-related consumer habits often come and go as fads, but plant-based alternatives are here to stay – and grow,” commented Jennifer Bartashus, Senior Consumer Staples Analyst at BI.

“The expanding set of product options in the plant-based industry is contributing to plant alternatives becoming a long-term option for consumers around the world. If sales and penetration for meat and dairy alternatives continue to grow, our scenario analysis suggests that the plant-based food industry has the potential to become ingrained as a viable option in supermarkets and restaurants alike. Meat and dairy alternatives could even obtain 5 percent and 10 percent of their respective global market shares in the next decade,” she added.

Breaking the market down into segments, BI predicts that plant-based dairy could make up 10% of the total dairy market by 2030, plant-based condiments and dressing — whilst still a nascent category — could grow from $2.3 billion to $25.7 billion and the alternative meat market could skyrocket from $4.2 billion to $74 billion.

In fact, it argues that plant-based meat sales have the potential to sprint past $74 billion, hitting $118 billion by 2030. This would be “a more aggressive but still realistic scenario”, it revealed.

Elsewhere in the report, BI said that it expects the Asia-Pacific region to command the largest share of the global plant-based market. Its analysis suggests the market could reach $64.8 billion by 2030, up from $13.5 billion in 2020. This it argues will be driven by the region’s increase in population, which will lead to a strain on resources.

In comparison, Europe and North America will generate approximately $40 billion in sales, with Africa, the Middle East and Latin America all generating between $8-9 billion in sales respectively.

But what will be the biggest driver of the market’s overall growth? A rise in competition, the report predicts.

As upstarts and incumbents alike continue to enter and innovate within the space this will drive consumer interest and engagement and bring plant-based prices further in line with meat products. This, BI argues, will be crucial for sustained growth.