Plant-based products gain momentum: Danish Plant Foundation leads the way

Interest in plant-based products in Denmark is on the rise. Boston Consulting Group (BCG) projects substantial growth in the Danish plant-based market, driven by plant-based dairy products. The newly established Danish Plant Foundation is also experiencing overwhelming interest, signaling a commitment to advancing sustainable plant-based solutions in the food industry.

Foto: Food Nation

Despite fluctuations in interest due to high inflation, plant-based foods continue to captivate consumers. Concerns related to health, environmental sustainability, climate impact, and animal welfare, especially among younger generations, are driving this sustained interest. Plant-based dairy products have been at the forefront of the plant-based foods market’s growth. According to BCG, the market share of plant-based products in Denmark is set to increase from 2% to 11% towards 2035, largely driven by the consistent sales performance of dairy alternatives. 

Global Trends

In the United States, sales of plant-based dairy products surged by 12% in 2022, while plant-based meat alternatives experienced a minor decline of 0.4%.  A similar trend is observable in Denmark, where various plant-based options within dairy alternatives are gaining traction. The similarity in taste and texture between plant-based dairy products and their traditional counterparts facilitates the transition for consumers. 

While the plant-based beverage sector shows promise, it faces challenges stemming from the presence of lower-quality products overshadowing their higher-quality counterparts. Nevertheless, there is optimism within the industry that subpar products will naturally phase out of the market in the forthcoming years, as innovations and high-quality products make their way onto the market.

The Danish Plant Foundation´s Impact

A significant driver of the transition to high-quality plant-based products in Denmark is the recent establishment of the Danish Plant Foundation. In its inaugural application round, the foundation received a staggering 97 applications, totaling approximately EUR 27 million in requested funding. This remarkable response underscores the strong interest in advancing a plant-based transition within the food industry and the ability for public/private partnerships and collaborative approaches to stimulate innovation. 

Since then, the fund has received additional means and is currently running a second round of applications with EUR 16.3 million planned to be handed out. The call will support projects stimulating demand for plant-based foods, supply of plant-based foods and projects stimulating the whole value chain by building bridges between sectors.

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