Cultured meat startups on the rise
According to FutureBridge’s research, investments in cultured meat startups indicate investors are buying into their claims. Global cultured meat startups received more than $318.6 million in funding in 2020, a 266% increase over the previous year.
“We are now witnessing cultured meat products move from the lab to the factory,” says Sarah Browner, senior analyst at FutureBridge. “Many cultured meat companies believe they will have commercial products ready within the next few years. However, they caution that it is more important to get the release right than to do it quickly.”
San Francisco-based startup Memphis Meats led the 2020 funding haul. Backed by big conventional meat players Tyson and Cargill, the company raised a $161 million Series B round, bringing its total haul to $181.1 million.
Startup companies from the Netherlands also feature prominently in the list of most funded cultured meat startups in 2020. Mosa Meat, the Dutch startup founded by cultured meat pioneer Mark Post, received $75 million in a second funding round. The company, which made the world’s first cultivated beef burger, raised funds to upgrade to small-scale output in the first half of 2021. It is targeting a full industrial site as early as the end of 2022.
The research outlook projects accelerated developments in the cultured meat sector through the rest of 2021 and beyond. Reducing cost, increasing scale and achieving regulatory support will be the key challenges that companies will need to overcome in the coming years.