Future Food-Tech

At Future Food-Tech's event, explore strategies for future-proofing the alternative proteins sector through diverse solutions, next-stage investments, and public-private partnerships

By Elizabeth Crawford

- Last updated on GMT

Source: ReThink
Source: ReThink

Related tags alternative protein

Despite declining sales and investment in the alternative protein industry in recent years, the segment is seeing early green shoots that suggest category stakeholders may be clawing their way out of the trough of disillusionment and up the other side of the Gartner Hype Cycle to the promise of full integration.

The journey will not be easy and many companies will not make it, but those that do will likely do so by teaming with other players, including through mergers, public-private partnerships and agreements with investors who are patient and share the same passions and concerns about the health of the planet, people and animals.

At the Future Food-Tech Alternative Proteins​ summit in Chicago June 17-18, hosted by ReThink and FoodNavigator-USA, more than 700 industry stakeholders, including investors, entrepreneurs and government leaders, will critically examine the challenges facing the alternative protein sector and strategize how best to reinvigorate the space.

Attendees will hear from senior leaders from across the value chain, including FDA, USDA, Upside Foods, The EVERY Company, ENOUGH, Impossible Foods, Danone, Unilever, ADM and Cargill.

Together they will explore key themes including how to foster consumer acceptance and increase adoption of alternative proteins, expedite product entry and approval via regulatory pathways, and how to reassure investors. They will also share strategies for overcoming challenges, including how to close the price gap, lower costs by derisking production and improving unit economics and elevate the sensory experience. They will also examine how AI could help optimize product development and the extent to which hybrid and blended solutions will push forward the next generation of nutrient-dense proteins.

FDA, USDA join industry leaders on the mainstage

The event will kickoff with a networking brunch where players from around the world can share trends and brainstorm next steps during small roundtable discussions.

This will be followed by the opening panel discussion on the main stage, “Navigating Global Protein Diversification: Accelerating Next-Generation, Nutrient-Dense Protein Innovation," moderated by Udi Lazimy, Founder and Principal at Lazimy Regenerative Impact Partners.

Other sessions on the main stage on day one include an address from USDA Deputy Under Secretary, Research, Education and Economics Sanah Baig, followed later in the day by a panel discussion on expediting cultivated meat commercialization, during which FDA Regulatory Review Scientist & Microbiology Reviewer Stiffy Hice will share insights.

In the afternoon, FoodNavigator-USA Deputy Editor Deniz Ataman will moderate a conversation about the evolving seafood market, including how to overcome global challenges to mitigate a fragile supply chain through tech and innovation.

The second day will begin with a session moderated by FoodNavigator-USA Senior Editor Elizabeth Crawford examining strategies for increasing consumer acceptance and adoption of alternative proteins. Speakers include Jo Lepore, global director, foresight & capabilities exploration at McDonald’s, Suzi Gerber, principal investigator, consumer behavior and ESG investing at Tufts University and Thomas Brennan, partner at McKinsey & Company.

Day two will also feature a start-up showcase in which up and coming innovators in the space will pitch their solutions to a panel of judges, followed by a Q&A to better understand their products, strategies and visions for the future.

Beyond the mainstage

Beyond the mainstage will be opportunities for more intimate discussions in breakout discussions, including one hosted by FoodNavigator-USA Senior Correspondent Ryan Daily, in which a panel of experts will examine how alternative proteins can move beyond mimicry to drive innovation and consumer engagement. Experts also will discuss where there is whitespace for product development and the market risks and opportunities for creating products that have never been seen before.

Attendees also will have a chance to taste the future of the alternative protein industry as emerging and established players sample their products during meal breaks that double as networking opportunities and a chance to explore the exhibit hall and start-up alley.

Attendees also can connect with each other through Future Food-Tech’s popular 1-1 networking platform, which allows attendees to easily schedule meetings, manage their calendars and reserve tables in a room set aside for meeting business targets.

Register today

Find out more information about the speakers, program highlights, startups and registration at Future Food-Tech Alternative Proteins Summit​.

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