Nicole Junkermann is an investor in industry-leading Food Tech company Eat. Nicole is a worldwide entrepreneur who focuses on disruptive technologies. Here, she applies her sector expertise to developments in agritech.
What are Alternative Proteins?
Alternative proteins refer to proteins derived from sources other than traditional animal sources, such as beef, chicken, and pork. Alternative proteins have gained significant interest in recent years for several reasons, including ethical, environmental, and health concerns.
Alternative proteins seek to replace red meat with more environmentally sustainable sources, whether plant-based or otherwise. Research suggests that ruminant livestock – i.e. cattle farming for beef – accounts for between 7 and 18 per cent of global methane emissions, so finding new ways to eat protein while maintaining consumer interest and confidence is vital to growing the sector and also to help mitigate climate change.
Investing in Eat Just – A plant-based egg alternative
Nicole Junkermann, the international investor who founded venture capital firm NJF Capital in 2012, is an investor in Eat Just, which offers a plant-based egg substitute that provides healthy and nutritional food alternatives. Their eggs have five to seven grams of protein per serving, 69 per cent less saturated fat than a chicken egg and 0% cholesterol – and there is no chance that any battery hens are harmed at any stage in the egg’s production. Eat Just has raised $465M in funding, and Junkermann explained why she thinks the company is a smart bet.
“Much of the difficulty in selling alternative proteins to consumers is rooted in convincing them to eat protein sourced from traditionally unsavory sources,” she explains, “like insects or algae. Obviously, that’s not a problem for something plant-based like Eat Just’s egg.” She adds, “Alternative proteins aren’t just more environmentally friendly – they are also potentially healthier. Redish meat is a good source of protein and iron, but has also been linked to heart disease, certain cancers, and other health conditions.” And so, ultimately, everyone wins – animals, consumers, and investors alike. It’s healthier, sustainable, and without cruelty at any point.
A final thought
In conclusion, alternative proteins offer a promising solution to address the challenges posed by traditional animal protein production. With the development of new technologies and the increasing demand for sustainable and healthy food options, alternative proteins are likely to become more mainstream in the coming years.