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Aleph Farms management team
Aleph Farms leadership team (from L to R): Shulamit Levenberg, co-founder and chief scientific advisor; Didier Toubia, co-founder and CEO; and Neta Lavon, chief technology officer. Image credit: Rami Shalosh / Aleph Farms / PRNewsFoto

Midweek Digest: Big-money B rounds for alt-protein as Aleph Farms nets $105m, Meati raises $50m

July 7, 2021

Here’s our selection of some of the top agrifoodtech headlines from around the web these past seven days – including two big-money Series B fundings announced in the alt-protein space just today.

Cultured steak pioneer Aleph Farms raises $105 million (Israel). L Catterton’s Growth Fund and DisruptAD — the VC arm of UAE sovereign fund ADQ — led the Series B round, with agrifood corporates BRF, Cargill, CJ CheilJedang, and Thai Union also participating. Aleph Farms — which fed its groundbreaking cell-cultured beef steak to former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu late last year — said it will use the funding to accelerate its global expansion and commercialization plans. (Aleph Farms)

Meanwhile, Meati banks $50 million Series B funding (US). The Boulder, Colorado-based startup is also creating alt-protein whole cuts – though it’s going the plant-based (or rather, fungi-based) route. Acre Venture Partners and BOND led the round, and Meati is using the proceeds to complete construction of its new commercial-scale production facility in time for a retail launch next year. (Forbes)

Satellogic to go public through merger with Cantor Fitzergald SPAC (US). New York-based Satellogic provides high-resolution satellite imaging services to multiple industries, including food, energy, and water. It has 17 commercial satellites in orbit, which it says is gives it more capacity than the next four largest Earth observation companies combined. (Satellogic)

C3 scores $80m for its ‘virtual food hall’ platform (US). The Miami-based startup offers dishes from over 40 “world-class restaurant” brands through its combination of “on-site eateries, digital kitchens, grab-and-go, and online ordering and delivery.” Brookfield Asset Management and REEF Technology co-led the Series B brand. (C3)

Biden pushes for tractor owners’ right to repair (US). President Joe Biden is set to issue an executive order that will compel the US Department of Agriculture and the Federal Trade Commission to introduce rules that “give farmers the right to repair their own equipment how they like,” ending lockouts imposed by equipment manufacturers such as John Deere. (The Drive)

Animal meat and plant-based analogs are not ‘nutritionally equivalent,’ researchers find (US). A team at Duke University‘s Duke Molecular Physiology Institute compared samples of “a popular plant-based meat alternative” to grass-fed ground beef, finding that 171 out of the 190 metabolites they measured varied between the two proteins. The greatest distinctions were found in amino acids, dipeptides, phenols, vitamins, and fatty acids. (Medical Xpress)

Next Meats launches plant-based egg alternative (Japan). Dubbed NEXT EGG 1.0. the product will initially be sold B2B before being made available to consumers later this year. The Tokyo-based company remained tight-lipped on the pricing and ingredients for the alt-egg. (Next Meats)

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