Mosa Meat is the latest company to jump on the “clean meat” bandwagon, announcing they’ll be launching their own version within the next two years. This comes right after the conclusion of a round of funding at an undisclosed amount. They join other startups like Memphis Meats and SuperMeat to bring us mainstream vegan food.
Major corporations are beginning to invest in clean meat startups. We’ve seen Tyson buy into Beyond Meat, who is offering their famous Beyond Burger at restaurants like TGI Fridays. SuperMeat received $3 million in funding at the beginning of the year and will be bringing their products into the market in the next few years as well.
Mosa Meat has been collaborating with Mark Post, a university professor in the Netherlands, to make clean beef affordable. They unveiled the first clean meat burger back in 2013, which was cultivated muscle fiber from cows. However, the cost of that burger was approximately $300,000 — not a price anyone is willing to pay at the supermarket.
After completing their first round of funding from United States investors, Mosa Meat expects to improve on their product. It could hit as low as $3.60 per pound, which is competitive against higher-lean ground beef. According to the Good Food Institute, they’re going to be implementing clean fat into the meat “with ingredients that could help the beef’s shelf life, taste, and color.”
Further funding is expected by the end of the first quarter of the year. Mosa Meat be spending the next 12 months preparing to scale up their production and will be launching their product at higher-end restaurants. While SuperMeat is aiming toward the mass market, Mosa Meat will be offered at more of a premium.
With so many companies launching cultivated meat, is there a worry about oversaturation? Peter Verstrate, CEO of Mosa Meat, doesn’t believe so. Their goal isn’t to make the most money, but to solve an issue of growing meat production as the global population increases.
“If there’s a breakthrough in the US or Israel before us, it will at least be a good starting point,” Verstrate tells Food Navigator. “I personally would be fine with that. The value of market for meat globally is more than one trillion dollars. Four companies in a shared field is not an issue.”
Like the other startups, Mosa Meat wants to win over traditional meat eaters. They want to make a similar product that not only makes it easier to feed a growing population and to limit animal cruelty, but to drastically improve our environment. Deforestation, methane emissions, feed for cattle, and energy consumption all factor into farming animals, and creating cultivated meat would limit those impacts.