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Supporting Australia's future protein businesses capture the opportunity in Asia

Launch your sustainable protein business into Asia with the GROW2Asia Future Protein Program

An exclusive program developed by leading agrifood innovation systems design firm Food Futures Company in partnership with global agrifood tech impact accelerator GROW. The GROW2Asia Future Protein Program is a 5-month market entry program supporting Australian scale ups capture the opportunity in Asia, supporting you to navigate and understand the region and confidently expand your footprint into the ASEAN.


Based in Singapore, GROW is a perfectly positioned landing pad to assist Australian businesses to launch into the wider region. This program will leverage mentors, coaches and investors in the vibrant alternative protein hub of Singapore, as well as tapping into Australia's deep experience in agriculture innovation and favourable location just a stone's throw away from the wider Asia region. 

The GROW2Asia Future Protein Program is part of a global program delivered by GROW; join other Future Protein scale ups from around the world to learn and connect with other brands and businesses on the same global expansion journey as you. 



Maximise opportunities for new innovations to meet the evolving demands in quantity, quality and variety of proteins

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Check out our alumni

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Why Future Protein?

In the next 30 years, demand for protein will grow exponentially, with the global population set to reach 9.7 billion by 2050. According to CSIRO, there is currently a $13 billion market opportunity for Australia to lead innovation in traditional animal protein, plant protein and novel protein production to address this demand and contribute to the future of protein globally. 

The future protein sector exists at the intersection of a range of emerging consumer trends and social, environmental and technological developments including:

  • Increased interest in nutrition and human health

  • Environmental impact of climate change and addressing the reduction in food and agricultural waste and developing more sustainable and transparent food systems

  • Technological developments in novel protein production such as precision fermentation, repurposing food waste for protein production and cellular meat production

The convergence of these trends challenges the current state of protein production, highlighting the need for a more sustainable and equitable protein industry and creating the opportunity for transformation through innovation.


The Asia-Pacific alternative protein sector is forecast to hit over $7 billion by 2027

Applications Closed

Program Overview

This world-class program will provide access to Food Futures and GROW's extensive network of mentors and experts, research partners, and corporate customers both locally and across the globe.  The program is divided into 4 Phases to allow ventures to assess their readiness and then manage their global expansion with confidence.

Phase 1:



Introduction to South East Asia & exporting

The program will commence remotely with phase one focused on helping you to clearly define your markets for export and optimise your value chain for export success. A series of virtual workshops will be delivered to elaborate on the benefits and opportunities of trading in the region using Singapore as a gateway.

Phase 2:



During this second phase, you will be provided support to prepare your marketing assets and export strategy in readiness for the 'boots on the ground' trip to Singapore in October.

Market Access

Phase 3:



Scaling your internationalisation plan 

Mentoring and expert sessions focused on developing your long-term export strategy with a specific focus on: in-market resourcing including legal and compliance; distribution; developing your roadmap for expansion; fundraising in Asia; and setting up an advisory board.

Phase 4:



into Asia 

Individual, tailored support to build a local team and establish business structures. It is anticipated that this phase will include in-person visits by the founders. The cohort will participate in the Singapore International Agri-Food Week (SIAW), one of the largest food and drink trade events in Asia where you will have the opportunity to exhibit and activate connections. This phase will also involve a showcase event and market immersion with the GROW team.  However, if this is not possible, the Food Futures-GROW team can provide appropriate in-country support.

The GROW2Asia Future Protein Program is an international food innovation program to shape the future of all protein sources so that it is healthier, sustainable and consumer-centric
Applications closed

Unlocking Asia

The Asia-pacific Alternative Protein Sector is multiplying at a compound annual growth rate of 14.8% and is forecast to hit over $7 billion by 2027. 

Alternate sources of protein such as tofu, tempeh, and soy have been a staple of the Asian diet for over a millennia as traditional ingredients in everyday foods. The early adoption of non-traditional proteins in Asia has paved the way for future protein products to be readily accepted. Consumers in Asia are embracing sustainability and becoming more open to trying more diversified protein products, including healthier traditional protein options, as they care more about social and environmental issues.

Singapore as a future protein landing pad for the rest of Asia

Singapore has earned the reputation of being a food tech innovation hub, and the Government is supporting this push with a S$60 million Agri-Food Cluster Transformational Fund to boost food security and aims to produce 30% of the population's food needs domestically by 2030. 

Why Singapore?

  • 2nd easiest country to do business in the world: attractive tax, world-class infrastructure, access to talent, strategic geographic location

  • Asia’s hub for alternative protein: home to Asia’s leading alt protein startups, the first country to approve the sale of cell-based meat, >US$100m government investment

  • Ranked #1 ecosystem for startups in APAC: home to 12 unicorns, >3,800 tech-enabled startups, ecosystem worth US$89bn

As a result, protein start-ups are mustering in Singapore to take advantage of the supportive ecosystem and the strong consumer platform to test their products before expanding into the broader ASEAN markets.

Got a Question? Book in for a chat!

Who should apply

The GROW2Asia program will officially launch in early June 2023  and is a 5-month program finishing in November 2023. We welcome Australian alternative protein brands, sustainable and innovative traditional protein brands and future protein food tech or ingredient businesses looking to export into the ASEAN region in the next 12 months. 

New food tech processes

Plant-based protein

Innovative traditional protein

Alternative seafood

Alternative Dairy

Insect protein

Cell-based meat

Waste value adding

Innovative ingredients

Precision fermentation


Seeking the next group of passionate and highly motivated future protein businesses

Applications closed

Program Benefits

The GROW-Food Futures team join forces to provide you with the tools, resources and connections you need to de-risk and fast-track your market expansion. Plug in to Singapore's agrifoodtech ecosystem as a landing pad to launch into the greater ASEAN region. 

Join Australian and International teams on the same journey as you, building long term connections across the global future protein sector.

Plug into Singapore’s
Agrifoodtech Ecosystem

Access the thriving ecosystem in Singapore, recognised as Asia’s agrifood innovation hub and the first nation in the
world to approve the sale of cultivated meat.

Grow Remotely before
Going-in Country

Lay the foundations for international growth from your home market to maximise in-market opportunities and
explore unique resourcing models for Asia.

De-risk & Fast-track
Expansion Plans

Connect to local market capabilities and knowledge to validate and adapt your startup’s business model and
customer value proposition.

Founder & Business

Receive targeted, personalised coaching from an industry
expert to effectively help you strategize and execute your
internationalisation game plan


Build connections with other founders from Australia and around the world and businesses through our collective network and engage in peer-to-peer learning. Further internationalisation pathways and alumni programs

Industry events

Opportunities for PR and participation in large industry events, regional showcases and pitching opportunities. 

What you need to know 

The GROW2Asia Future Program officially kicks off 1 June 2023. Click any of the 'apply now' buttons to submit your application. 

Applications closed


Applications Open: 7 March 2023

Applications Close: 30 April 2023

Shortlist Notified: 15 May 2023

Finalists Announced: 19 May 2023

Program Launches: 1 June 2023


We understand the complexities and challenges of being a startup at different financing phases. The value of the programme is US$ 65,000 however to make this accessible to founders, we offer a few fee payment options

1: Full Fee Payment (includes $5000 joining fee)

$25,000; paid in 4 payments before stages 1-4

2: Joining fee + Royalty option

$5000 joining fee (paid in 2 tranches) + Royalty on successful introductions

*Scholarships: Food Futures will offer two full sponsorships subject to satisfactory participation and progress (teams meeting diversity requirements are highly regarded) 

*Diversity Bursary: 

Teams who demonstrate diversity, i.e. at least 1 Indigenous /female/ migrant founder

-75% bursary available on the Joining Fee  

-$2000 travel stipend for the in-country trade mission

Food Futures Company will work with you to identify any available federal and state grants (including EMDG) to help with the program's costs; all travel and exhibition costs are not included in the program fee.


*Further 1:1 discussions will be carried out to align on investment, royalty and equity terms with each startup.
Excluding Goods and Services Tax (GST), or withholding tax


A hybrid model of remote, virtual learning and in person events


Have you got questions?

Office hours is an opportunity for you to book in a 20 minute session with one of the team to talk through any questions you have about the program



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  • Can I apply if I live outside of NSW?
    You can apply if you are a current student or alumni of Charles Sturt University even if you live outside of NSW or live near the NSW border of Wagga Wagga.
  • What if I have never used online tools such as Zoom or Google Drive before?
    No problem – we will provide all participants with technical training and support to make sure you can participate fully in the program
  • Can I apply if I have never attended University?
    Yes!As long as you are a First Nations person living in NSW
  • How do I apply?
    Applications open on 19 September 2023. Click any of the apply now buttons on this page and fill in a simple application form.
  • Do I need to have a team or can I apply by myself?
    You can apply by yourself. If you have other team members, there must be at least 50% First Nations people on the team.
  • I don’t live in Wagga Wagga, are the costs of participating in the in-person workshops covered?
    Yes your accommodation and meals will be covered plus agreed expenses to get there (must be approved in writing).
  • Can I apply if I am currently working or studying full-time?
    Yes, the online sessions will be held at a time that suits the majority of participants. You will need to be available for the in-person sessions in Wagga Wagga, which is for the bootcamp 6-10 Nov 2023 and the final showcase on WC 12 Feb 2024. Please contact us if you are not sure.
  • Can I apply if I only have an idea and have not launched my business yet?
    Unfortunately not this time. This program has been designed for mature businesses, however we will be running an early stage program again in early 2024. Please sign up to our newsletters and give us a call as we'd love to meet you.
  • Will it cost me anything to participate in the program?
    No, there is no cost to apply or participate in the program as it is fully funded
  • Is the program held virtually or in person?
    Most of the program is delivered online with two in-person meets one in November (5 day bootcamp, 6-10 Nov 2023 in Wagga Wagga) and one in Feb 2024 (Showcase, WC 12 Feb 2024, Wagga Wagga).
  • Who will own my idea and business at the end of the program?
    You will own your idea and business 100%. Neither Food Futures Company or Charles Sturt University will own any equity in your idea or business and all of your information will remain confidential (with exception of case study and other promotional materials that we will discuss with you prior to you accepting a place in the program).
  • What does the selection process look like?
    We will speak with everyone who applies and conduct online interviews to select the final participants (up to 10 will be selected)
  • I am not sure my idea is suitable – where can I get more information?
    You can book a call with us here
  • How will applications be evaluated/what are you looking for?
    We are looking for export-ready Future Protein brands with products already in the market that are ready to expand into Asian markets in the next 12 months. The Food Futures and GROW team will assess all applications based on product innovation and market opportunity, founder/team experience and coachability and commitment to a long-term export strategy.
  • How long does the program go for?
    The program will run for approximately 5 months.
  • How does the program work?
    The program is structured over four key phases including: Phase 1, 1 June - 9 July 2023: You will commence the program remotely with an introduction to the ASEAN region and exporting. Phase 2, 9 July - 13 August 2023: Market Access- Get a clear idea of your target customer and launch market, and prepare your marketing assets and export strategy in readiness for the 'boots on the ground' group trip to Singapore in October. Phase 3, 20 August - 24 September 2023: Scaling your internationalisation plan and developing your long term export strategy. Phase 4, 1 October - 5 November 2023: Launching into Asia
  • Where is the program located?
    The Future Protein Program is a hybrid program delivered online via masterclasses, access to a learning workspace and 1:1 sessions via zoom and also has an in-market trip to Singapore w/c 30 October 2023.
  • When do applications open?
    Applications open on 7 March 2023 and will close 30 April 2023. To apply simply click the link HERE or press any of the APPLY NOW buttons on the page.
  • How many hours per week will I need to commit?
    You will need to commit 5-10 hours per week during this program; however, the more time and energy you put into the sessions and, most importantly, making the connections we curate for you, the more successful your launch into Asia will be.
  • Do you own my IP?
    No; please discuss with our team.
  • How do I apply?
    Please fill in an application form HERE or click any of the 'apply now' buttons on the page.
  • When does the program kickoff?
    The program will officially launch from 1 June 2023.
  • What are the key benefits of the program?
    Tailored support to each business Strategy and pitch coaching Access to a comprehensive platform of resources and tools Access to our broad network of industry mentors, founders, experts and trusted service providers in Australia and Asia Connections to customers and channel partners PR and participation in large industry events Further internationalisation pathways and alumni programs Access to EMDG partner for export and other grants
  • How many teams will be accepted?
    4-6 Australian future protein businesses will be accepted.
  • Is this the only program you will run?
    This is the only GROW2Asia™ Future Protein Program running in 2023; there may be more in the future.
  • Do you take equity?
    No- not unless you choose a payment plan that includes an option of equity- please feel free to discuss this with our friendly team
  • How can I learn more or ask questions?
    Email or book in a chat with the team here.
  • Do I need to have exported before?
    You do not need to have exported before, but your company must be ready to export in the next 12 months. If you are already exporting, this program can help you build further connections in the market.
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