GOOD Meat, a division of US-based sustainable food company Eat Just, has secured US$170 million in new funding.
Investors include UBS O’Connor, a hedge fund manager within UBS Asset Management, Graphene Ventures and K3 Ventures.
The company will use the fresh capital to increase capacity and accelerate R&D for high-quality, real meat without slaughter.
With this transaction, GOOD Meat has become a subsidiary of Eat Just, which secured US$200 million in funding in March this year.
GOOD Meat is a meat made from animal cells instead of slaughtered livestock.
In recent months, GOOD Meat has been focused on expanding the team, technology and manufacturing infrastructure to meet the surging demand in Singapore and to prepare for market entry in the US.
The company will quickly scale production in North America and Asia through multi-million-dollar investments in facilities in the US and Singapore, while evaluating collaboration and acquisition opportunities in the fast-growing sector.
The finding news comes during a week of a historic milestone for the food industry in Singapore. Madame Fan, the renowned Cantonese restaurant run by The JW Marriott Singapore South Beach, is the first restaurant in the world to replace conventional meat with cultured meat during set times.
The new chef-inspired dishes include Asian-inspired chicken salad, steamed chicken dumplings and chicken vegetable stir-fry.
GOOD Meat will replace conventional chicken for delivery on Thursdays beginning May 20, and for once-a-week dine-in starting soon.
As per a recent survey conducted by a leading management consulting firm, two-thirds of consumers polled said they were open to substituting conventional meat with cultured meat. More than 80 per cent of restaurant operators said they envisioned cultured meat replacing all conventional meat in the next 10 years.
“This investment, along with the historic decision by JW Marriott Singapore South Beach, points to what’s ahead: meat without killing animals will replace conventional meat at some point in our lifetimes. The faster we make that happen, the healthier our planet will be,” said Josh Tetrick, co-founder and CEO of Eat Just.
“The US$2-trillion global market for meat and poultry is likely to experience significant change and disruption over the next 10 years as consumers increasingly recognise the environmental impact of their diet choices and search for healthier and more sustainable products like GOOD Meat to replace conventional animal proteins in their diets,” said Kevin Russell, Chief Investment Officer, UBS O’Connor.
“As part of a global organisation aimed to cut food wastage, partnering with a purposeful company such as GOOD Meat was the perfect collaboration to support our ‘Source Responsibly’ efforts whilst we continue to deliver exceptional culinary experiences,” Marco Pedrelli, Director of Food & Beverage and Culinary, JW Marriott Singapore South Beach.
Eat Just aims to build a healthier, safer and more sustainable food system in our lifetimes. Its expertise lies in functionalising plant proteins to culturing animal cells.
It is the company behind one of America’s fast-growing egg brand, which is made entirely of plants.
Of lat, the alternative protein items, such as plant-based meat, egg and milk, has caught the imagination of Southeast Asian consumers, particularly in Singapore. The city-state recently witnessed the emergence of companies such as Shiok Meats, Turtle Tree Labs and Next Gen, attracting VCs and partnerships.
In a recent interview, Next Gen’s COO Andre Menezes said that global demand for plant-based meat products will be driven mostly by flexitarians.
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