USA – New Age Meats (NAM), a California-based cultivated meat start-up specializing in the cellular agriculture of pork, has raised a US$2 million in a Seed extension round led by TechU Ventures.

FF Venture Capital, the lead investor in the company’s previous round, also participated in the extension, along with other prior backers such as Sand Hill Angels.

In addition, the Losa Group and members of San Diego Tech Coast Angels supported New Age in this latest round.

The funding will propel food science at NAM and accelerate the commercialization of the company’s first product, a pork sausage.

Founded in 2018, aims to build a more sustainable supply of protein.

NAM is one of the latest start-ups to emerge in the nascent cultured meat arena which is ramping up to be one of the hottest spaces for future food.

Currently, there is a wealth of start-ups around the world working on bringing a range of cell-grown meat, poultry, fish and seafood products to market.

The eco-friendly and ethical strategy of companies like this is to produce safe meat without slaughter, without compromising on taste, texture, smell and the cooking experience.

It’s all about mimicking meat products as closely as possible and making meat that consumers will prefer to conventional meat, explains Derin Alemli, Director of Operations & Finance at NAM.

“Consumer needs around meat are changing rapidly, the demand for higher quality is increasing in higher-income countries, while demand overall is rising as the middle-class population increases globally, all while the desire for sustainable consumption is growing as well.”

“It’s estimated that by 2050 we will have run out of farmable land to feed our world. It is imperative that we find solutions to this problem now while there is still time, and we are excited to be involved in helping humanity tackle this enormous task.”

“Our products can deliver on all of those needs – higher quality and safer meat made sustainably, with substantially lower resource needs than conventional farming.”

Looking beyond this extension round, NAM is working toward building its pilot facility, scaling product development and production.

“While working hard on product development, our next phase will be a Series A raise to fund our pilot facility, from which we will be able to bring our first product to market – a pork sausage,” Alemi continues.

The California-based company says that the new funds will allow it to further expand its food science department, implement more automation and robotics, and reduce the cost of its first sausage product.

Natanel Barookhian, the managing partner of TechU, has reportedly joined the New Age board as an observer.

Brian Spears, New Age Meats CEO, said, “Food science is incredibly important to our overall mission. We make meat that consumers prefer to conventional meat. That requires us to invest in understanding how we perceive animal protein.

“What is the science behind the experience of smelling, seeing and eating tasty meat? The mission of our company is to make safer meat without slaughter, but we will never be successful unless our products are delicious. With an expanded food science department, we are able to deliver on that promise.”

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