Thai Union invests in cell-cultured protein, plant-based seafood grows in Asia

Published on
July 12, 2021

After investing in cell-cultured seafood producer BlueNalu earlier this year, Thai Union is investing in a cell-cultivated beef producer.

In addition, new plant-based seafood analog products continue to be introduced in Asia and Europe.

Thai Union’s Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) Fund joined other strategic and financial partners to invest in Israel-based Aleph Farms’ USD 105 million (EUR 89 million) Series B fundraising round.

Aleph Farms is one of the world’s leading cell-cultivated meat companies, growing beef steaks directly from healthy cells sampled from living cows without harming animals and with significantly reduced impact to the environment, Thai Union said in a press release.

“This method of production provides a more sustainable option for meat-eaters who want to enjoy a steak while knowing their meal is both sustainably and ethically produced. The cell-cultivated steaks replicate the familiar texture and taste of steak without the animal slaughter,” Thai Union said.

Aleph Farms has also received support from Cargill and CheilJedang, and has gained accolades from UNESCO and the World Economic Forum, according to the company's website. 

In January, Thai Union, Rich Products, and other companies invested in San Diego, California, U.S.A.-based BlueNalu, a cellular aquaculture producer.

Meanwhile, plant-based meat and seafood analog manufacturer Grothwell is partnering with Indoguna, a meat and seafood operator in Singapore, Cambodia, and Dubai, Vegconomist reported.

Bolstered by USD 8 million (EUR 6.7 million) raised in funding in April 2020 and the new partnership, Grothwell will now be able to further extend its reach in the food and beverage industry and aims to bring its offerings to even more hotels, individual cafés, and restaurants, according to Vegconomist.

Earlier this month, plant-based pork analog producer OmniFoods in Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong, launched OmniSeafood, Vegconomist reported.

The plant-based seafood analog line includes Omni Classic Fillet, Omni Golden Fillet, and Omni Ocean Burger, in original, battered or breaded fish burger varieties, along with OmniTuna. The company also plans to launch OmniSalmon.

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