On November 14, 2018, the Next Generation Good Food Forum was held in Beijing’s Dongsheng International Science Park in Zhongguancun, China’s Silicon Valley. The purpose of the Forum was to raise awareness of and highlight the business opportunity in plant-based foods and alternative proteins by engaging the agri-food business and investor community in China.
The event attracted more than 200 people, including industry experts from Europe and the USA where the plant-based alternative protein industry has been extremely active in the last few years. The Forum was co-organized by Dao Foods International and its host site partner Dongsheng Science and Technology Park as part of the Future Agriculture Summit, a joint effort between Dao Foods and Dongsheng.
“Dao Foods has long believed there to be a huge opportunity to mainstream plant-based foods in China. We are excited to partner with the Dongsheng Science and Technology Park to bring experts from around the world to exchange ideas with food entrepreneurs and agribusinesses here in China. We felt this was a great start to discussions and we invite food entrepreneurs to continue the dialogue with us to increase the supply of tasty plant-based products in China.”
--- Albert Tseng, Co-Founder, Dao Foods International
During the morning sessions, Dr. David Welch, Director of Science and Technology at Good Food Institute (USA), gave a presentation highlighting the fact that the increasing global demand for animal protein will outpace the world’s available arable land for livestock, as well as contributing to various other environmental problems such as climate change and water scarcity. These economic factors have created a business opportunity for innovative companies that are creating exciting food products using plant-based proteins.
In two other presentations, Verena Wiederkehr, Head of Food Industry at ProVeg (Germany), and Tao Zhang,Co-Founder at Dao Foods, profiled several companies in the US and Europe that have been successful in launching plant-based meat alternatives, such as Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods who have each achieved sales revenues of more than 100 million dollars. Both companies have been invested by many famous investors, including Bill Gates and Li Ka-shing.
In the afternoon, there were three sessions covering different topics.
First Panel: The Business Opportunity of Plant-based Meat in China
第一场专题讨论 : 植物肉的中国商机
Tao Zhang, co-founder of Dao Foods International, was the first panel’s moderator, accompanied by panelists Chris Kerr, Chief Investment Officer, New Crop Capital’s (USA), Rosie Wardle, Program Director, Jeremy Coller Foundation’s (UK) and Hao Wang, Founder, Treasure Tree Investment Firm (China). The group discussed the environmental implications of increasing meat consumption and why plant based meat is a great opportunity in the US, Europe, and China. They agreed that there are huge investment opportunities in plant-based protein products, and expressed their opinions on how to select entrepreneurs for this space.
Chris Kerr, Chief Investment Officer, New Crop Capital
Rosie Wardle, Program Director, Jeremy Coller Foundation
Jeremy Coller基金会，项目主管，Rosie Wardle
Hao Wang, Founder, Treasure Tree
Second Panel: China's Millennials and Next-Gen Food
第二场专题讨论 : 中国千禧一代和新生代食品
In the second panel, Goal Blue’s founder May Mei, RootPop’s Founder Kelly Chen, and Senior Manager at ProVeg (Germany) Verena Wiederkehr discussed the Millennial population in China, and whether plant-based foods can become fashionable and fun enough to be successful in the market. Kelly and Verena agreed that young people go after brands, and plant-based foods should develop diverse brand images, and also play into cultural trends in the areas of sports and fashion.
Verena Wiederkehr, Head of Food Industry, ProVeg International
Third Panel: How do we collaborate to build a plant-based food industry?
第三场专题讨论 : 多方合作打造植物美食产业
In the third panel, Albert Tseng, Dao Foods International’s co-founder, was the moderator. Panelists include: Brandon Trowbridge, American chef and food industry entrepreneur (China), Dr. David Welch, Director of Science and Technology, Good Food Institute (U.S.), Danai Pathomvanich, Senior Partner, Hatton Capital (Thailand), Qingguo Gao, Chairman, Oriental Purple Wine Co., Ltd. (China), and Alexander Pestalozzi, Asia Managing Director, Theo Mueller Family Office (Germany). The panel discussed how multiple stakeholders can collaborate to build the plant-based food industry in China covering topics ranging from product formulation, food science, manufacturing, distribution, and investment.
在第三节主题研讨环节，道夫子联合创始人曾小虎作为主持人，与来自美国的厨师及⻝品行业创业者Brandon Trowbridge、美国好食品研究所科技总监 David Welch、来自泰国的Hatton资本⾼级合伙人Danai Pathomvanich、东方紫酒业事长高庆国、德国穆勒集团的Alexander Pestalozzi共同就“如何在中国和各利益相关方合作打造植物美食产业”进行探讨。
Albert Tseng, Co-Founder, Dao Foods
Brandon Trowbridge, Chef and Food Industry Entrepreneur
Dr. David Welch, Director of Science and Technology, Good Food Institute
好食品研究所科技总监，Dr. David Welch
Danai Pathomvanich, Senior Partner, Hatton Capital
During the event, the panelists also had good discussion with the audience, including industry experts from home and abroad.
We are grateful to have been a part of this milestone event bringing together experts from around the world at China's impressive Zhongguancun Dong Shen International Science Park. We are thrilled to see so much engagement and expertise around the topic of plant based and cell-based food in China.
-- Verena Wiederkehr, Head of Food Industry, ProVeg International
This is a strategically important forum in global plant-based foods sector. With growing trend of plant-based eaters, and the continued improvement of macro-environment, it is foreseeable that the scale of plant-based foods sector will grow more tremendously in China, and it is very much worth investing.
At the Next-Gen Good Food International Forum, I had the chance to meet with investors, entrepreneurs, and scientists interested in improving our food system with plant-based foods and clean meat. There is considerable expertise in adjacent research areas such as crop science, biochemistry, and stem cell biology that can be used to accelerate the plant-based food and clean meat industries in China and around the world. I’m really optimistic about the development of next-generation foods in China with plants and cells. Thanks to Dao Foods and Dongsheng Science and Technology Park for organizing such a great event!
-- Dr. David Welch, Director of Science and Technology, Good Food Institute