German Startup to Produce Egg Substitute


Perfeggt™ has raised close to $3 million with backing from a number of venture capital funds to develop and market an egg substitute suitable for scrambled or omelette presentation.  The product is based on fava bean protein and according to Berndt Becker, food technologist and Chief Product Officer of the Company, “The plant-based proteins and lipids in the product replicate complex multifunctional and versatile characteristics of an egg and will be indistinguishable in taste.”


Based on reports of emerging products claiming to displace real eggs, it is concluded that the technology to reproduce the organoleptic qualities of whole egg liquid are not exceedingly difficult.  Optimal shelf-life, stability, nutritional value and functional properties are however almost impossible to reproduce in a single package at a competitive shelf price. 


Both U.S. and E.U. egg substitutes are many times more expensive than the product they claim to displace. Following a reduction from $7.99 to $4.99 per 12 oz. container, corresponding to  the contents of six eggs, the leading U.S. brand represents an equivalent cost of  $10 per dozen compared to conventional eggs.  There are  limits to the number and loyalty of consumers willing to pay for claimed welfare and sustainability as evidenced by the extremely small market share of egg substitutes in the U.S. The leading plant-based egg substitute had sales of $25 million in 2021 compared to shell egg sales valued at over $10 billion assuming 225 million hens producing for the shell market and average unit retail across all categories of $1.85 per dozen.


Developers of egg substitutes frequently point to the existing market for shell eggs and egg products and project unrealistic claims relating to projected substitution.  The potential market to replace shell eggs in industrialized nations is catnip to venture capital investors. Given realities of the marketplace they will not see a return on the finance provided to start-ups offering high-priced ersatz egg liquids.