2nd Plant Based Foods Summit: Promising pathways towards a sustainable future

From startups to investors, the entire food industry came together to support the 2nd Plant-Based Foods Summit  

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New Delhi: The Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) and Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) came together to present the biggest 2nd Plant-Based Foods Summit organized by Plant Based Foods Industry Association (PBFIA) at New Delhi.
The principal sponsor of the summit was U.S. Soybean Export Council. One of the highlights of the summit was the “Pitch Perfect” Investors Show, which gave companies the opportunity to pitch their brand to potential investors globally and secure funding. The show aimed to target investors and strategic partners from the plant-based foods sector.
The Guests of Honour at the summit were Maneka Gandhi (Member of Parliament) and Dr. Amar Patnaik (Member of Parliament). Ms Gandhi brought a unique perspective for the growth path of this sunrise industry. She believes that the industry cannot succeed without every player turning a profit. And for that to happen, we must enable as many people as possible to develop a taste for plant-based foods. To do this, one of her suggestions was to work with restaurants and caterers, encouraging them to include at least 1-2 plant-based food options in their menu.
Mr Patnaik emphasized that the government’s support for plant-based industries is of paramount importance. By backing these industries, the government not only acknowledges the critical role they play in addressing pressing global challenges such as climate change and public health, but also encourages innovation and economic growth. Embracing and promoting plant-based industries signifies a commitment to sustainability, health, and a prosperous future for both the nation and the planet.
Ms Mercy Epao, Jt. Secretary, Ministry of MSME said that since India is one of the leading countries producing protein rich plants, it has huge potential to play a leading role even in the global market. She also explained various initiatives offered by the Ministry such as finance facilitation, Self Reliant India (SRI) Fund, etc. MSMEs from the plant-based sector too can take advantage of all the initiatives listed on the Ministry website.
Dr. Sudhanshu, Secretary, APEDA congratulated PBFIA for the efforts it has put in over the last 2 years towards organising the nascent plant-based industry. He said the industry is “booming and lot of prospects are there.” According to him, APEDA will be providing full support to the manufacturers, processors, exporters in promoting these products globally. They will keep promoting plant-based food products in all of their international trade events as part of their entire kitty of 700 products.
Jim Sutter, CEO US Soybean Export Council praised the innovation and ideas for food products in India. According to him the participation of many entrepreneurs and government officials at the 2nd Plant-based Food Summit testifies to the importance being placed on plant-based foods and plant-based nutrition in India. He said that the millennials and Gen Z are an important block of consumers that our industry serves. Because they are looking for food that provides sustenance, protects the Earth and mitigates the effects of climate change. He was positive that the food processing industry can unlock many opportunities of comparative advantage for India since we have historical knowledge of producing plant-based foods.
According to Jasmijn De Boo, CEO, ProVeg International, CMI research is projecting that by 2030, Indian plant-based dairy will reach Rs. 106 billion by 2030 and plant-based eggs will reach Rs. 14 billion.
The summit also featured a report launch titled, “Future is Green: Opportunities in the Plant Based Foods Sector” written by Renub Research in collaboration with PBFIA, in the presence of Mr Anurag Saurabh, Project Consultant, Renub Research and “The Live Culinary Show” by professional chefs such as Chef Dr Gautam Chaudhry, Chef Sanjay Agarwal, Chef Anirudh Sethi, Chef Bharat Khemani, Chef Somnath Porel, Chef Tarun Kumar, Chef Dr. Prem Ram, and Chef Seitu Gupta who demonstrated innovative plant-based recipes, providing inspiration and new product ideas.
In addition to this, the summit showcased an exhibition of plant-based foods from various companies and start-ups and featured a conference with immersive sessions by industry experts as keynote speakers, policymakers, the HoReCa community, academia, etc, that provided insights into the latest trends, innovations, and the future of the plant-based foods industry. The exhibition helped exhibitors showcase their products and network with key players in the industry, including potential investors and partners. It also featured the most innovative businesses, products, ingredients, and machinery from India and around the world, with a focus on promoting and celebrating the rapidly growing plant-based foods industry. The participants included Continental Greenbird, Nutricircle, Brenntag, Sanitech Engineers, Blue Tribe Foods, Vezlay, Pall Corporation, Shaka Harry, Evolved Foods and many more. Brenntag, Norex, Blue Tribe, Novozymes, Praj, Shaka Harry, Evolved Foods, Celcius Logistics, Plantaway, Vezlay, Pall Corporation, Soupherb, Marine Hydrocolloids, Relsus, Hello Tempayy (Vegolution), Get Sain, 1ness, White Cub, So Good, India ExpoMart, Seaspire, Veganta, Odd burgers, Symrise and more.
“India’s plant-based foods industry is experiencing rapid growth and transformation. Consumers are becoming more health-conscious, and environmental concerns drive the shift toward plant-based diets. Growth has positive implications for the economy, environment, and public health. The industry has the potential to create new jobs and increase revenue streams for small and medium-sized enterprises, one such project being India’s First Plant Protein Cluster at Bhiwadi. Additionally, plant-based diets have been shown to impact the environment positively” said Sanjay Sethi, Executive Director, Plant Based Foods Industry Association (PBFIA). Commenting on the success of the event, he further added, “The plant-based foods industry has reached a pivotal moment, standing at a crossroads of tremendous opportunity and responsibility. Events like these only encourage us to do better. We must navigate this path with integrity, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to creating a better food system for both the planet and the people.”
Additionally, PBFIA Awards Ceremony recognized the outstanding contributions and achievements of individuals and companies to the industry. This ceremony provided an opportunity for participants to gain recognition for their hard work and celebrate their success.
The event provided a platform for stakeholders to explore the potential of the Plant-based foods industry in India, discuss ways to promote its growth and development along with creating new companies and entrepreneurs in the rising Plant-based foods sector.
It continues to live up to its promise of being a game-changer for the industry and an excellent forum for exhibitors and attendees to network and form new business relationships.