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Wheat protein to emerge as healthier alternative to whey protein

Riding the vegetarian and vegan trends, the global wheat protein market is set for a healthy 5% CAGR over 2019-2026, however Europe stands to remain as the global market leader. An enriched source of plant-based protein, wheat protein is increasingly perceived as a viable alternative for vegetarian and vegan populations. The market will continue to gain impetus from expansion of bakery sector and thriving sales of plant-based food products, as per the findings of a new study.

The gluten-free trend is emerging as a main restraint for growth of the wheat protein market. Moreover, limited technological advancements are a major challenge for shareholders in the wheat protein market. Regional analysis of the global wheat protein market reveals that Europe would exhibit a CAGR of nearly 5% through 2026, on the back of substantial opportunity residing in the region’s bakery sector.

Key takeaways of the wheat protein market

  • Europe is emerging as a prominent regional market for wheat protein manufacturers.
  • According to Food Agriculture Organization, European countries produce approximately 30% of the wheat in the world. Manufacturers of natural ingredient-based proteins are promoting their products through various channels including magazines such as bodybuilding.com, online portals, and marketing campaigns to fuel demand for plant-protein enriched products. This is expected to boost the wheat protein market in Europe.
  • Key players in the U.S. and Europe are advised to focus on untapped markets such as China and India, as Asia-Pacific is projected to offer lucrative opportunities in future.
  • More than half of the wheat produced worldwide is consumed by humans or used in other applications such as animal feed, cosmetics, and others. Therefore, a very limited amount of wheat is available for extraction of proteins. This along with fluctuating cereal prices and high gluten content in wheat are major factors restraining growth of the global wheat protein market.

Positioning of wheat protein as a healthy alternative to conventional whey protein can bolster adoption among health conscious consumers. Moreover, branding and marketing wheat protein as a vegan product would significantly help increase sales among millennial with high purchasing power.

Increasing demand for plant-based protein

As more consumers turn away from meat, demand for wheat protein products is expected to increase at a rapid pace. Wheat protein is widely gaining popularity and acceptance as a replacement to a wide range of conventional meat-based products. Wheat protein is increasingly used in the food processing industry as a complete or partial meat replacement.

Extending application areas

Wheat protein has wide applications in the food & beverage industry, mainly in sports foods, nutritional supplements, dairy, bakery, and confectionery. These include tenderizing, whipping, and foaming. Consumer opinions on wheat-based protein, along with FDA approvals of wheat protein for usage in food products leads to increasing use in products such as cosmetics and food.

  • The Moms Co., established in 2017, provides natural protein shampoo and conditioner, in which wheat protein is a main ingredient.
  • Making Cosmetics Inc., provides a hydrolysed wheat protein solution for applications in skin care and haircare products.

These insights are based on a report on Wheat Protein Market by Future Market Insights.

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