Contemplating the transition from animal to vegetable proteins

Prospective thinking and innovation generation

Animal and vegetable proteins are at the heart of major global challenges.  The quantities needed to meet human are rising sharply. At the same time, the scope of possible applications is broadening, especially in materials design. A major player in this sector, Avril – Sofiprotéol asked us to explore possible business models for the development of supply chains in Europe and Africa. In subSaharan Africa, total demand for proteins is expected to grow by 40% by 2030. In parallel, the percentage of vegetarians in the population is 3% in France, 5% on average in Europe and 10% in the United States.

4 prospective scenarios (e.g. a protein war, the aquatic world, the "health and well-being" society and agriculture 7.0). Participants were asked to project the future in each case.

Dreaming up new concepts by projecting the future in 2030

To develop promising “protein” business models in Africa and Europe, we used an accelerated prospective approach, working with the BIPE consulting firm, which produced a study on protein supply and demand in 2030, especially in three zones:  Europe, subSaharan Africa and North Africa & the Middle East.

The trends observed were covered in a two-day, participative creativity workshop held for twenty people from different Avril-Sofiprotéol departments and subsidiaries. Projecting the future from the given scenarios, they co-developed new value propositions for vegetable proteins, concretized in innovative business models and value chains.

12 concepts, complete with their own value chain, Business Model Canvas, action plan and prospective scenario

After these days of ideation for collective intelligence, the results were compiled in a concept book. The presentation of several scenarios helped to accelerate decision-making and launch pilot projects.

One example:

PRODUCTEOL, or how to meet consumer demand by developing innovative, competitive and right-sized factories close to production centers.

“imagining tomorrow’s business models to create sustainable value around vegetal proteins was a very meaningful project.”


Catherine Ronge, CEO weave.air

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“Two years after, we realize that we are completely on track. It proves the quality of weave.air’s intervention was relevant.”
Jean-François Rous, Innovation Director, Avril