Why is this significant?
Whilst cell-based fat is being grown as a component of cell-based meat this startup, Cubiq Foods, is focusing on fat as the end product. Their aim to produce product high in omega-3 fatty acids also highlights the customisabilty of cellular agriculture products. Their forecast of USD30 million in commercial sales in 2022 implies their technology is well advanced.
European cellular agriculture company Cubiq Foods is taking a very interesting approach by focusing on just one cell type, fat cells. This vastly simplifies the technology required and may explain their aggressive timeline. The press release states that this timeline is as follows
“PHASE 1: Moira invests EUR 5m in 2019 to enable the construction of an R & D laboratory and a pilot plant with the capacity to produce up to 5.6 tons per year.
PHASE 2: In 2021 with an additional Moira investment of EUR 7m the capacity of the plant will be increased to 700 tons per year.
PHASE 3: The continued expansion includes the opening of new production plants from resources generated by CUBIQ FOODS themselves.”
It’s very interesting that their pilot plant will be capable of 5.6 tonnes per year and their 2022 target is 700 tonnes with projected sales of some USD30 million in 2022. This implies that their technology is very advanced if they can scale so quickly!
One of the often stated advantages of cell-based agriculture is the ability to customise products in ways impossible in conventional animal products. Cubiq claim they will achieve this by producing products high in omega-3 fatty acids and their product will “help reduce the use of other fats harmful to health, such as trans fats and palm oil.” It could even be used in plant-based products to help give a true meat-like flavour in a hybrid type plant/animal origin product.
Cellular agriculture of animal products has reached the tipping point from going from an “interesting technology” to a viable technology for establishing commercial businesses.
The cellular ag space just gets more and more interesting!