Cargill Invests in Cultured Meat Company
USAgNet - 05/15/2019
Cargill is participating in a Series A investment round led by VisVires New Protein and joined by several other investors looking to move Aleph Farms' product from prototype to the commercial marketplace. Aleph Farms grows meat directly from beef cells
using a 3D tissue engineering platform. In December 2018, it achieved a world-first by demonstrating it could grow a steak directly from bovine cells.
"Cargill is committed to innovation and we are delighted to be a part of Aleph's accelerated growth," said Sonya Roberts, managing director of growth ventures and strategic pricing for Cargill Protein North America. "This partnership connects new frontiers in
cell-based technology with insights in the global food system and supply chains to meet future customer and consumer needs."
While cultured proteins represent a relatively small portion of Cargill's portfolio, the company sees value in investments in innovators like Aleph Farms.
"Consumer demand for protein continues to be very strong. That means there's an opportunity for plant and cultured protein growth to complement our traditional animal protein portfolio," said Roberts.
Aleph Farms plans to begin building bio-farms and move toward a limited consumer product launch with steak grown under controlled conditions within three-to-five years.
The investment in Aleph Farms builds on Cargill's other partnerships in alternative protein. In 2017, Cargill was an early investor in Memphis Meats, a company leading the way in development of cultured meat.