The Protein system is changing. With the massive rise in interest in plant-based foods, it is clear that how we produce and consume protein has entered the public consciousness. We are beginning to understand the connection between the urgent need to respond to the climate crisis and the impact our diets can have on the planet. With momentum growing, businesses are changing, and they have a huge potential to deliver the transformation. Our new report explores the public commitments of 132 of the world’s leading food companies and asks: 

Will the current trajectory of business action deliver sustainable protein in time?

Read the executive summary here

Read the full report here

The food industry response
There is more awareness that our production and consumption of protein is in need of rapid transformation - from the excitement around innovative alternative protein sources to a mounting debate around the future of animal protein in our diets. 

The food industry has started to respond, expanding plant-based protein options and increasing the sustainability of meat and dairy. 

These changes are critical. The food industry lies at the intersection of major global challenges – meeting global food demand amidst dwindling natural resources, reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and delivering healthy, affordable and nutritious food for all. Change is gathering pace, but if we are to achieve global sustainability and nutrition goals in the next decade, the protein sector needs a system-wide and holistic transformation.

Recognising the urgency of this issue, Forum for the Future co-founded and facilitates the landmark Protein Challenge 2040 project. This is a unique international collaboration of food businesses and NGOs working to accelerate action toward a sustainable protein system.

Protein Challenge 2040

Report findings and solutions

The Future of Food report examines the latest public sustainability commitments from 132 of the world’s largest and most influential food businesses, from meat and dairy producers to high-street retailers and foodservice providers. 

The report found that:

  • While there is a widespread shift in the US and Europe towards a more diverse protein offering, these initiatives are often fragmented and isolated, without significant action to reformulate mainstream product ranges or to prioritise sustainable protein within business models
  • Amidst concurrent growth in meat sales, there is also little action to meet the need to overhaul animal feed production within the meat, dairy and fish sectors.

The report calls for integrated protein strategies and lays out a five-point action plan to drive truly transformative change as we enter the 2020s, a pivotal decade for the sustainability movement.

Join us

If you are a leading business, civil society or government organisation, find out how you can help the Protein Challenge 2040 deliver transformative action.

Within the Challenge, the Feed Compass Collaboration focuses on transforming animal feed sustainability. The Rebalancing Diets Collaboration focuses on the role of chefs and foodservice companies, suppliers and retailers in rebalancing protein consumption.

For more information or to get involved with our work on Protein, Feed or Rebalancing Diets:

Contact Roberta at [email protected]

Stay up-to-date

Visit our Futures Centre to keep track of trends, insights and opportunities for the protein sector.

Get the latest on the Protein Challenge 2040 straight to your inbox.

Join the conversation on our Protein Challenge 2040 LinkedIn Group, and on Twitter #Protein2040.

Read the executive summary here

Read the full report here