Indian audiences are regularly looking to find newer ways to consume cruelty-free protein, as per the recent Google Trends report which reveals 63 per cent of Indians want to try plant-based meat substitutes. Supporting the shift of Indian consumers towards plantbased living,
The Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO) has launched ‘The Plant Factor’ – a food innovation challenge, to extend their backing of Rs 20 lakh for the right plant-based alternatives for meat products. Applications are now open to Indian plant-based startups, businesses, restaurants, researchers, and students.
Welcoming applications, Executive Director- FIAPO, Varda Mehrotra says, “A kilogram of meat is about 30 times more demanding on the environment in terms of water, greenhouse gas emissions, than a kilogram of plant protein. There are about 5,500 varieties of plants and grains, vegetables and fruits that are edible, yet we concentrate on such a narrow selection.
India, specifically has a whole host of recipes of all that can be cooked from plants alone.” To participate in The Plant Factor Challenge, applicants are required to have/create a ready-tomarket, completely plantbased functional food product. “The product must also have a stable shelf life, a comparable taste and a nutritional profile similar to that of meat – as is expected of a product aiming to be a viable replacement.
The winning product stands to win Rs 10 lakh, with first and second runnerups also winning Rs 7 lakh and Rs 3 lakh. This money is intended as a seed grant to help scale the production and/or Go to Market strategies for the product(s) in question,” says Mehrotra. Applications are expected to close on October 2. “Shortlisting of the Top 8 to 10 applications will conclude by October 19, culminating in the grand finale on February 19. Selected participants will receive mentoring from India’s top food and business experts. In the finals, the teams will present their products for evaluation on taste/texture and market readiness.”