Microbial protein is one of the most sustainable sources of protein for animal feed. Animal feed industry is one of the largest users of land and water resources across the globe. Moreover, due to rising population and increasing demand for meat, protein-rich feed demand is also increasing. This factor is leading to the rising demand for protein such as fish meal and soybean meal. However, cultivation of soybean meal for feed the livestock is leading to deforestation and lass of biodiversity. Moreover, fish meal production is causing overexploitation of fish stocks. Therefore, manufacturers are shifting to alternate sources of proteins that are sustainable. This factor is driving the microbial protein for feed market growth.
Climate change and overexploitation of natural resources such as land and water are the leading sustainability concerns in livestock and animal feed industries. As a result, governments of various countries across the globe are funding companies that manufacture animal feed and ingredients using sustainable practices to reduce their overall carbon footprint and support the circular economy growth. Governments and private sector investors are also supporting companies that make animal feed protein from microorganisms as it is one of the most sustainable sources of protein for animal nutrition. For instance, in February 2022, Arbiom—a French American manufacturer of high-quality proteins for animal feed and food applications by processing agricultural waste and wood residues—received an investment of US$ 13.50 million from the France Relance investment program. The company has developed a unique technology based on agricultural waste and wood residues that transform lignocellulosic biomass into single-cell protein (SylPro), which can be used as an alternate protein source to conventional protein sources such as soymeal and fish meal in animal feed. After receiving the investment, the company announced the construction of its first commercial production plant in France. Similarly, in October 2021, eniferBio, a Finland-based startup, received a US$ 1.28 million BlueInvest Grant from the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) to develop PEKILO P65 mycoprotein as a sustainable alternative to soymeal in aquafeed. Thus, the rising government and private sector investment in the microbial protein for feed market is expected to positively impact the market growth over the forecast period.
A few players operating in the microbial protein for feed market are CALYSTA INC., Avecom, Arbiom, KnipBio, ICC, Alltech, and Unibio, and eniferBio among few others.