Report Description

Forecast Period


Market Size (2023)

USD 2.37 Billion

CAGR (2023-2028)


Fastest Growing Segment

Bakery & Snacks

Largest Market

North America

Market Overview

Global Wheat Protein Market has valued at USD 2.37 Billion in 2022 and is anticipated to grow with a CAGR of 5.57% through 2028. Wheat proteins are plant-based proteins classified as insoluble functional proteins. They are derived from whey and consist of lactalbumin, β-lactoglobulin, serum albumin, and immunoglobulins. Wheat protein is composed of two insoluble protein groups, namely gliadin and glutenin. Its consumption is crucial in meeting the body's protein and amino acid requirements, supporting muscle development, and enhancing immune function.

Key Market Drivers

Extensive Range of Application

Wheat protein boasts exceptional capabilities across a wide range of industries, thanks to its numerous benefits. Its applications span bakery products, flour milling, meat replacement, pasta, aquafeed, breakfast cereal, milk replacement, and pet food. The primary and extensively utilized application of wheat protein lies in the baker's adjustment, also known as the flour miller. This extensive range of applications in various end-use industries is projected to drive market growth throughout the forecast period.

Lactose intolerance refers to the body's inability to digest lactose, a natural sugar found in dairy products like milk. While whey protein isolates undergo more stringent filtration and processing to effectively remove lactose compared to whey protein concentrates, individuals with even mild lactose intolerance should avoid such products. For consumers seeking to enhance protein intake for health or training purposes, plant-based alternatives like wheat protein offer the best option, which can contribute to market growth.

Growing Demand for Plant Based Nutrition

The growth of the market is being fostered by rising personal disposable income and increasing consumer consciousness towards plant-based nutrition. Market growth determinants include changing lifestyles, westernization, increasing awareness about the availability of both naturally and synthetically produced wheat proteins in developing economies, and the rising health consciousness among the population. Furthermore, the market value will be further boosted by improving distribution channels, the rising number of gyms and fitness centers, the growing popularity of healthy and high protein powders, the ever-increasing vegan population, and the changing tastes and preferences of consumers.

Increasing Use in in Gym Supplement

Wheat protein is extensively utilized in the food and beverage industry, particularly in nutritional supplements, sports foods, dairy products, confectioneries, and baked goods, among other applications. Two insoluble protein groups, namely glutenin and gliadin, can be found in wheat protein. Its incorporation in the production of noodles and bread enables a high level of dough strength, resulting in an elastic texture. The food and cosmetic industries are expected to witness an increase in the utilization of these products, driven by evolving consumer perceptions of wheat proteins and FDA approval for their use in food products during the projected period.

Whey protein weight loss, whey protein powder, whey protein isolate, and whey protein for weight gain, as well as gluten allergy, are among the significant factors influencing market growth. Additionally, the report provides detailed discussions on best protein powder options for muscle gain, men, and lean muscle, along with gluten-free diet, recipes, and snacks. The price of whey protein powder, the difference between whey protein isolates and concentrate, wheat berries and substitutes, and their relationship with gluten are also addressed. Notably, leading market players investing extensively in research and development related to these factors have experienced substantial business growth.

Increasing Demand for Vegan Products

They play a significant role in market growth. Consumers are increasingly adopting meatless diets and seeking cleaner product labels, positioning wheat protein as a crucial source of nutrition. Furthermore, wheat protein products are gaining traction across diverse applications such as pet food, processed meat, bakery items, and more. These innovative ingredients offer benefits in new product development by reducing sugar content and enhancing protein content in final food products. They also contribute to the taste and texture improvement of various processed food items including baked goods, snacks, noodles, confectionery, and processed meat. Additionally, they serve as substitutes for egg and dairy-based protein in formulations such as sauces, dressings, desserts, and cakes. The increasing demand for wheat protein is greatly supported by the prevailing trend of veganism. As awareness of the numerous health advantages of vegan diets continues to rise, the global adoption of vegan lifestyles is on the upswing. Wheat protein is swiftly being integrated into functional food products to address nutritional imbalances caused by today's demanding lifestyles. Wheat protein-based products are non-genetically modified organisms (GMOs), rich in gluten, and are available in a wide range of flavors, offering customers numerous options. Manufacturing firms have an opportunity for innovation to expand their product portfolio. Consequently, the expanding global vegan population will significantly contribute to the growth of the global wheat protein market.

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Key Market Challenges

Lack of Technological Advancement

The wheat protein market faces several challenges, primarily stemming from a lack of technological advancement. The existing production methods for wheat proteins are inefficient, resulting in low yields and subsequently driving up prices. Consequently, the market's growth has been hindered. Furthermore, the absence of standardized technology has made it challenging for manufacturers to achieve consistent product quality. Consequently, the wheat protein market has experienced sluggish development and remains relatively small in scale.

Presence of Wheat Protein Substitutes

The presence of substitutes poses a significant challenge for the wheat protein market during the forecast period. Notable alternatives to wheat gluten include high gluten flour, bread flour, xanthan gum, eggs, and protein powder. Plant-based protein is experiencing rapid growth worldwide, leading producers to shift towards other plant-based proteins like pea, rice, pulse, canola, flax, and chia protein. The increasing intolerance towards gluten products among the population has resulted in reduced demand for wheat proteins. Consequently, the availability of alternative plant-based substitutes presents a potential threat to the growth of the global wheat protein market.

Key Market Trends

Increasing Focus on E-commerce Distribution

The growing prominence of online shopping is a notable trend in the wheat protein market, expected to have a positive impact in the coming years. The e-commerce distribution channel has significantly fueled the growth of the global wheat protein market over the past decade. E-commerce provides customers with access to regional and global brands of wheat protein products, offering a wide variety of options and enhancing cross-regional flavors of wheat-protein-based food products. Online shopping offers personalized assistance and recommendations for wheat protein-based products, delivering two major benefits to consumers. With the increasing presence of online retailing, the sales of wheat protein and related products through e-commerce channels are expected to experience significant growth, further propelling the expansion of the global wheat protein market.

Rise of Vegan and Vegetarian Products

As the number of vegans and vegetarians continues to increase worldwide, food manufacturers are introducing a wide range of vegan and vegetarian products to cater to this growing consumer base. Wheat protein serves as a valuable ingredient in many of these products due to its functional properties and high protein content.

Consumers are increasingly seeking products with clean and natural labels. Wheat protein, being derived from wheat flour, is perceived as a natural and minimally processed ingredient, making it appealing to consumers who prioritize clean and recognizable ingredients. The increasing availability of delectable alternatives has contributed to a growing trend of reducing animal product consumption. Additionally, heightened public awareness of the adverse health effects, ecological implications, and ethical concerns associated with animal agriculture has fueled the vegan food industry. Consequently, this factor has led to a rapid expansion of the market for wheat protein.

Segmental Insights

Application Type Insights

The demand for wheat protein in bakery applications is being driven by various factors, such as increased moisture content, improved water absorption, and enhanced softness of the final product. Moreover, the rising consumption of quick-bite foods like confectionery and snacks, driven by changing lifestyles, is fuelling the demand for these products. The market is projected to grow further during the forecast period, driven by increased adoption of wheat protein in the manufacturing of pastries, bread, cakes, rolls, and other bakery items to meet the growing consumer demand.

The significant presence of lactose-intolerant individuals has contributed to increased demand in the dairy application segment. Additionally, this protein serves as an effective lactose replacement in fermented dairy items. It is commonly used in vegetable beverages and desserts, primarily serving as a cost-effective alternative to milk. The target market for these products includes lactose-intolerant individuals. Furthermore, hydrolysed proteins offer a suitable substitute for dairy proteins, further supporting the demand in the dairy industry. The expanding applications in the dairy industry are expected to sustain the demand in the upcoming years.

Product Type Insights

In terms of product type, Wheat gluten is expected to dominate the wheat protein market share during the forecast period. This can be attributed to its wide availability, high protein and mineral content, and exceptional binding properties. Wheat gluten has witnessed significant adoption across various sectors including confectionery, bakery, dairy, nutritional supplements, and sports supplements. Additionally, the hydrolysed wheat protein segment is projected to exhibit the highest compound annual growth rate (CAGR) throughout the forecast period. This growth can be attributed to the rising demand for plant-based nutritional products and technological advancements in personal care formulations.