Big FMCG companies are entering the plant-based meat segment, targeting non-vegetarian consumers who are looking for an animal-protein replacement, besides a large section of vegetarians.
''I think Nestle, HUL, Marico can evaluate whether to enter over the next five years if this category becomes large,'' said Roy.
ITC has launched sustainable plant-based protein products for consumers under its ITC Master Chef IncrEdible brand across two varieties - the ‘Incredible’ Burger Patties and ‘Incredible’ Nuggets.
''The product has been rolled out across e-commerce channels and large retail chains in eight cities as of now as well as to institutional customers,'' said ITC Vice President and Business Head, Frozen and Fresh Food Ashu Phakey.
ITC has a first mover advantage in the Plant-based meat segment, he added.
Tata Consumer Products President - Packaged Foods (India) Deepika Bhan said: ''With growing health and sustainability consciousness among consumers and increased exposure to global food trends, we think there is significant opportunity for brands like us to innovate with plant proteins.'' Blue Tribe CCO Sohil Wazir said the plant-based meat market was almost non-existent two years back and in 2021 several brands ventured into this space.
''In these two years, consumer awareness levels also went up with younger generations of Millennials, Gen Z and Gen Alpha making an irreversible shift towards conscious consumerism.'' Wazir further said ''looking at the growing trend of plant-based meat, Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma who are also both plant-forward in their lifestyle made them the perfect ambassadors and investors for Blue Tribe,'' he said According to Wazir, there is a lot more headroom and ''conservatively, we hope that the category will be USD one billion by 2030 in India''.
''We plan to expand our portfolio of products to provide non-vegetarians with a variety of use cases to replace meat in their lifestyles and we are also looking at the export market, especially in countries with a large Indian diaspora,'' he said.
Anand Nagarajan, Co-founder, of Shaka Harry said: ''Plant protein is an emerging food platform.'' ''In short, the industry has gone from less than a handful of brands to now more than a dozen new players ranging from start-ups to the largest food conglomerates.
''This is a good thing for the segment to get consumer attention. While plant-based meat products are relatively new we are all still in the consumer food space. Growth and scale there is driven by having products that perform on taste, are priced for value and widely available,'' said Nagarajan.
Plant protein will make its mark across multi-billion dollar categories like biryani, momos or RTE / RTC.
''This space will see a Rs 100 cr domestic revenue brand in as early as the next 2-3 years. Shaka Harry with its superior taste profile will emerge as India's favourite plant protein brand,'' he said.