The cost of protein powder can vary greatly on the basis of source, refinement, and the cost of additional additives which may also be beneficial for protein digestion and absorption. A review of the product range we supply provides a protein cost per 30grams of about $0.50 to $6.50 for the actual protein content of the product.
If you are looking for a low-cost protein, whey provides the best value for money. A blended product of whey concentrate and whey isolate generally offers the best value.
Factors that can affect cost.
- Protein Source
Protein sourced from whey (which is a byproduct of cheese production) offers the best value due to the ease of its production. Plant proteins tend to cost more to produce. Hemp protein, in particular, can be very expensive due to limitations on the growth of crops in many locations. This makes it a rare source of protein, though hemp protein provides some unique benefits.
- Protein Refinement
Protein concentration can vary depending on the processes used to refine a protein source into powder. Whey concentrates are the least processed form and contain approximately 80% protein. Protein Isolates are the most common form of protein supplement and contain around 90% protein. Hydrolysates are isolates that have undergone further processing which both removes even more impurities but more importantly pre-digests the product. Hydrolysates contain a huge 94% or higher purity but cost substantially more.
Better products tend to also have certain additives which increase the cost of protein powder but also improve the product in terms of taste, digestibility, and protein absorption. Whey often includes lactase for example, which helps with digestion and lactose intolerance.