Israeli lab-grown meat developer Future Meat Technologies has raised $347 million in a Series B funding round to build a US production facility for its cell-grown meat products, the company announced on Sunday, according to Bloomberg.
This is the largest investment in a cultured meat company to date.
The investment was co-led by ADM Ventures, part of agriculture giant Archer-Daniels-Midland Co., and an unnamed global tech investor, according to founder and CEO Yaakov Nahmias. Tyson Foods Inc., the biggest US meat company, also participated in the round.
The Rehovot-based cultured meat company declined to provide a valuation, but food tech industry sources tell Globes they estimate the valuation to be at more than $900 million.
Future Meat Technologies was founded in 2018 to focus on cost-efficient, GMO-free production of meat directly from animal cells, without the need to raise or harvest animals.
The technology is based on Prof. Nachmias’ work at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is licensed through its technology transfer company, Yissum. Nahmias, as Chief Scientific Officer, previously noted that Future Meat is the only company that can produce animal fat without harvesting animals and without genetic modification.
Prof. Nahmias told Bloomberg that the company plans to build a 13,000-gallon production facility in the US over the next year as it awaits US regulatory approval. It’s currently looking at Boston and Minneapolis for possible locations.
The company already has one in Rehovot. In June, Prof. Nahmias told NoCamels the new production facility is a real “game-changer” because it “allows us to move out of the lab to grow hundreds of kilograms of meat in stainless steel vessels. Production is cleaner and more efficient. Most importantly, it allows us to speed up regulatory approval to aim for market [entry] by 2022.”