Germany Doubles-Down on Protein Transition

Zoe Mayer of the German Green Party states, “The intensive negotiations on the budget have paid off. Our budget holders were able to push through key green demands that represent nothing less than a paradigm shift in the agricultural sector’s funding system. For the first time, a large sum – 38 million euros in 2024 – will be earmarked for the promotion of alternative protein sources and the switch to plant-based agriculture, after decades of focusing primarily on subsidising livestock farming.

“At the same time, the conversion of animal husbandry to better forms of husbandry can now finally begin. The corresponding funding for the BMEL’s funding concept has been released. Pig farms will soon receive subsidies for the conversion of their animal husbandry to better forms of husbandry with budget funds totalling at least 705 million euros until 2033.”

“The previously announced funding for the strategy to reduce animal testing has also made it into the final budget. Funds totalling €1 million are now available for the first time for the development of this strategy, with a further million earmarked for subsequent budgets.”

The promotion of plant-based alternatives comprises the following four components:

  • The BMEL’s protein crop strategy will be amended to include the future promotion of proteins primarily for human nutrition rather than animal feed (8 million euros in 2024);
  • A competence centre “Proteins of the Future” is to be created and a stakeholder forum on protein sources in human nutrition is to be set up;
  • Transition support (so-called opportunity programme) for the exit from agricultural animal husbandry and entry into the production and processing of plant-based, fermented and cell-cultivated proteins for human nutrition with investment funding of 20 million euros in 2024; and,
  • Promotion of production and processing methods for plant-based, fermented and cell-cultivated proteins and accompanying measures for projects that support the transition to the production and processing of alternative proteins (10 million euros in 2024).