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Algae as an alternative source of protein

18. October 2021

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The Danish Chamber of Commerce

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With a rising world population, the global food production needs to support multiple protein sources to feed more people. At the same time, climate conscious consumers are looking for more and better alternatives to meat and dairy products. Alternative proteins to animal sources as well as to feed to animals are in high demand. However, in some cases, plant proteins lack nutritional or functional features to be considered as a real substitute for animal protein.


The EU’s Farm-to-Fork strategy highlights algae as an important alternative source of protein in sustainable food production and global food security. Microalgae contains large amounts of protein (often more than 50 per cent) as well as healthy fats.

Microalgae can be grown indoors using industrial fermentation technology. This enables an efficient and weather independent protein production, which requires very little space, thereby benefiting biodiversity and the climate. Additionally, both water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are significantly lower compared to conventional protein productions.

NatuRem Bioscience is a Danish company working with microalge fermentation. NatuRem develops sustainable B2B ingredients that can function as an alternative to, for example, proteins from meat, milk or soya in the future food and feed production. The company has begun to upscale their technology and collaborates with leading Danish knowledge institutions and companies.


Green proteins constitute a great potential for CO2 reductions worldwide. Overall, it is estimated that a shift towards green proteins could reduce global CO2e emissions by more than 1 billion tonnes by 2030. Specifically in terms of algae production, CO2 emissions are almost 40 times lower than for meat protein, while water and soil consumption is more than 40 and 300 times lower respectively.


Contributors: Novozymes, NatuRem Bioscience