Royal Cosun is a leading international agricultural cooperative, owned by 8.400 growers. Our mission is to unlock the full potential of plants in a transparent and circular way and to convert this potential into valuable, plant-based solutions. In doing so, Cosun is responding to societal challenges associated with climate change and the replacement of fossil raw materials, the protein transition and the increasing demand for food products and healthier food ingredients.
Our vision The Plant Positive Way is based on nearly 125 years of Cosun history in the successful value enhancement of arable crops such as sugar beets, chicory and potatoes in a diverse portfolio of products with added value. The goal of all these efforts is to create value for members, customers and other stakeholders and to achieve a positive long-term social impact. Every day, more than 4,000 employees, 8,400 members, growers and many Cosun partners dedicate themselves to this common goal with a great deal of energy, knowledge and passion.
Our history and experience provide us with the expertise and technology to efficiently get the best out of plants and produce ingredients is a sustainable and circular way. In the past years we added plant proteins to our range of ingredients and invested in the development of specific knowhow on plant proteins, mild extraction processes and developing great products with this new generation of proteins. Part of this development was the acquisition in 2018 of the Wageningen Start-up GreenProtein and their access to proprietary knowhow on extraction of proteins from green leaves.
The protein transition is the shift from the consumption of animal protein to vegetable and new protein sources. In recent decades, people have started to eat more and more animal proteins such as meat, fish, milk eggs and cheese. In order to be able to continue feeding the growing world population in the future and to create a more sustainable diet, consuming more vegetable proteins is a necessary transition.
Rabobank expects the European market for meat substitutes to grow eightfold by 2035; from 214 kilotons in 2020 to almost 1,700 kilotons in 2035. With an average annual volume growth of 15%, this product group is expected to grow faster than any other food category. Dairy substitutes have been on the shelves for some time, but with an expected volume growth of 7-8% per year, those will also so well above average in the coming years.
According to Bloomberg Intelligence in its report ‘Plant-based foods poised for explosive growth’ from August 2021, the plant-based foods sector is expected to see huge growth over the next decade as consumer habits transform. The global plant-based food market (retail market) will soar by 451 percent. A growing preference for more sustainable foods is pushing the movement.
In our integral strategy towards 2025 – Unlock 25 – we have defined plant-based proteins as an important growth platform. Herewith we are responding to the growing demand for plant-based proteins and green food ingredients. In addition, plant proteins contribute to the transition in the Cosun portfolio to ‘green’ (climate-friendly) and health-promoting alternatives. This growth will take place both autonomously and through innovation and strategic partnerships.
All Cosun activities in the field of plant-based protein for the food sector have therefore been grouped in the emerging business unit Cosun Protein. Our mission is to contribute to the protein transition with high quality protein ingredients and thereby contribute to the shift from the consumption of animal proteins to vegetable and other new protein sources. The protein transition is necessary to meet the growing demand for protein-rich products and to ensure a more sustainable diet without continuing to harm valuable ecosystems on our planet.
The whole development of this next generation ingredients is strongly anchored in the Cosun innovation center where over 100 specialists work on applications, technology and find ways to create the most sustainable proteins from plants.
Consumers are acutely aware of the impact of food production on our environment and are choosing to eat more sustainably sourced plant-protein based products. As a result the demand for functional plant-based proteins is growing rapidly. Food producers are looking for high quality functional proteins for their product development. By making plant based products with attractive taste and texture, Cosun is setting a new standard for functional proteins to help our customers achieve their goals.
“Our mission is to contribute to the protein transition
with high quality protein ingredients.”