Pea Protein gains massive push

By pjain      Published June 15, 2019, 2:16 a.m. in blog Health   

Why Pea Protein

Health Impact

The push for pea protein and plant-based meat alternatives

Market Size

Clearly pea protein production is less than 1-millionth of global meat consumption.

Year pea protein Meat
2020 350
2019 <300 330 m
  • units in tonnes

Main Uses of Pea Protein

  1. Used as a supplement in shakes and drinks in powder form - this was initial and limited HIGH price demand.

  2. Now popular demand from firms making plant-based "meat" products

    Beyond Meat really took off on its IPO making meat products mainly from pea-protein and other plant-based flavors like beet juice, etc. Its market cap exceeded a 100x larger revenue company Cargill.

  3. At leading edge are brand new uses to boost protein content of all kinds of foods especially dairy-free yoghurts, cheese and milk.

Key Trends

Agriculture benefits from Legumes - Fixes Nitrogen

  • 4m acres just of peas grown across North america

The source crop, yellow field peas (spit yellow peas), are plentiful, robust and liked by farmers all over US and even as north as Canada.

  1. It is also water-efficient, this is a relatively dry weather friendly, as it suits the production of fields of pulses - peas, beans and lentils.

  2. Fixes N2 without fertilizer - improves the land. The yellow field pea and other legumes transfer nitrogen from the air into the soil, making it more fertile.

  3. Makes more money per acre.

    Although peas don't yield as much produce as wheat for every acre, the price per bushel is typically higher and they don't need as much fertilizer to grow.

Timing mid 2019: Millenials and Health Conscious Boomers increasing turned to pea proteins

The millennial generation has woken up. Their tastes are rather dramatically changing in affluent countries, substituting animal for plant-based proteins.

  • Health conscious consumers were looking for alternatives to dairy and to soya.

But by 2018, this turned into a boom for pea protein, from meat-free burgers to dairy-free cheese, you can find pea proteins in all sorts of foods - you can even drink pea "milk".

Trend to non-dairy Milk

Fear of GMO Soya Proteins deprecated

For decades soya beans have been the main supply of plant-based protein. This was backed by heavy advertising and tofu burgers, tofu turkeys, hot dogs, etc etc.

However, since the turn of the millennium, it has been falling out of favour.

Soya in USA nearly 100% GMO

Recently, Europe is highly put off by the fact that soya protein is often derived from genetically modified soya crops.

Hexane to extract protein from Soya is not liked

Hexane, a solvent derived from oil, is typically used to extract protein from soya beans.

While the industry says virtually all of the chemical is eliminated before soya protein reaches the market, for some consumers the use of hexane was a deal breaker.

Pea protein, which doesn't require chemicals during the production process, has become an attractive alternative.

Peas are considered stinky in West

  • Puris had to battle people's childhood memories of eating peas, which did not necessarily endear them to the product.

    "Most people's memories as a kid of eating peas is not delightful or delicious," - Tyler, CEO, Puris

Pea protein manufacturing Majors

Puris - major - only US pea protein manufacturers

  • Puris president and CEO Tyler Lorenzen only US pea protein manufacturer for 30 years.
  • Propreitary pea breeds to farmers
  • Technology to separate peas to separate components efficiently - taste good - not too "Pea-taste"
  • Recently took investment from Cargill to grow capacity
  • now being implemented in Beyond Meat products.

  • Timeline

  • 2019-06 Received $75m Cargill investment - to be used to double pea protein production with a second plant.
  • 2018 Health Consciousness increasing rapidly, Milk Protein deprecated
  • ?2017 - Puris won Beyond Meat, etc as key volume customers
  • 2013 Tyler was working for family business Puris in Minneapolis, Minnesota which had just developed its own pea protein.
  • 2011 Tyler was professional athlete with the NFL's New Orleans Saints
  • 2000+ Soya falling out of favor as source of protein - Estrogens, GMO, impact on men ..

  • Pea power: Can the humble crop save the planet? - BBC News

  • CNBC June 2019


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