Alt Protein Watch: Nature's Fynd's fungi protein, Eat Just's plant-based egg and Aleph Farms' cultivated meat feature in our round-up

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Nature's Fynd's fungi protein, Eat Just's plant-based egg and Aleph Farms' cultivated meat feature in this edition of Alt Protein Watch. ©Getty Images
Nature's Fynd's fungi protein, Eat Just's plant-based egg and Aleph Farms' cultivated meat feature in this edition of Alt Protein Watch. ©Getty Images

Related tags: alternative protein, plant-based, cultivated

Nature's Fynd's fungi protein, Eat Just's plant-based egg and Aleph Farms' cultivated meat feature in this edition of Alt Protein Watch.

Not plant, not meat, all fungi: Nature’s Fynd looks to conquer meat and dairy alternative markets in Asia

US-based alternative protein firm Nature’s Fynd has its eye on both the alternative meat and alternative dairy markets in Asia, and is confident it can tackle both of these simultaneously with its highly versatile fungi protein.

Nature’s Fynd recently raised US$350mn in funds and is already planning to build its first Asian facility in Singapore by 2023, highlighting its ambitions to break into the Asian market within the next few years.

“Singapore is a key market for us as we enter Asia and we are finding that it is an ideal base from both an operational and business development standpoint,”​ Nature’s Fynd Chief Marketing Officer Karuna Rawal told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

“A key step for us [to enter the Asian market will of course be] to secure regulatory approvals - We expect to receive regulatory approval first in Singapore followed by additional key markets in Asia.”

Eat Just in the Middle East: Firm unveils plant-based egg and cultivated meat growth strategy – Exclusive CEO interview

The CEO of Eat Just has revealed how the firm is gearing up to expand its plant-based egg and cultivated meat business in the Middle East, in an exclusive interview following its recent announcement to establish a hub in Qatar.

Located in the Umm Alhoul Free Zone, the hub will comprise of a large-scale facility for Eat Just’s GOOD Meat, its cultivated meat division, and potentially a protein processing facility for JUST Egg, the company’s plant-based egg division.

According to Josh Tetrick, co-founder and CEO, the firm is committed to manufacturing and distributing both meat and egg products in the Middle East region.

Taking a cultivated steak: Thai Union and CJ Cheiljedang seal MOUs with Aleph Farms

Asian food giants Thai Union and CJ Cheiljedang have signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with Aleph Farms – the cultivated meat company growing steaks directly from animal cells.

As part of these agreements, Thai Union and CJ CheilJedang will help to accelerate Aleph’s scale-up, go-to-market activities and elevate distribution of cultivated meat in existing marketing channels across the APAC region. Aleph Farms previously ammounced a similar deal with Mitsubishi in Japan.

Aleph’s recent $105m Series B funding round was led by L​ Catterton, the largest global consumer-focused private equity firm, and DisruptAD, ADQ’s venture platform, and included participation from Temasek, Singapore’s state investment company.

“We are excited to partner with key players in the Asia market and establish a new category of meat products to address increasing consumption in the region,”​ said Didier Toubia, co-founder and CEO of Aleph Farms. “We carefully consider partnerships that reflect our core values and sustainability commitments, and both Thai Union and CJ share our resolutions for achieving carbon-neutrality and enhancing food security for all people of Asia and around the world."

Boring approach: NZ’s first commercially mass-produced ‘local’ oat milk firm targets APAC expansion

New Zealand’s first locally mass-produced oat milk brand Boring Oat Milk has its eye on the discerning APAC-wide coffee crowd after a successful domestic supermarket launch, and is confident that its ‘whisper, not shout’ strategy will stand out on shelves.

Boring Oat Milk claims to be the first and only oat milk brand to be made at scale locally using local oats, and that just 1% of plant-based milks on New Zealand store shelves are actually made in New Zealand.

“We are the first oat milk brand to be mass producing oat milk in New Zealand, making some 50 million litres a year at our facility,”​ Boring Oat Milk Founder Morgan Maw told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

Loving localisation: How the food industry is tailoring global plant-based trend to Asian tastes

Industry players are increasingly tailoring plant-based products to cater to the taste, texture, nutrition needs of consumers in Asia, with consumer awareness and demand showing no signs of slowing.

Although the current plant-based trend started in the West, plant-based foods are not new in Asia, with traditional staples such as soy, seaweed, wheat gluten, or mushrooms prevalent.

This has since evolved, and recent plant-based foods introduced in the region include Philippines’ meat free Giniling (stewed ground meat), Hong Kong’s meat-free dim sum, Japan’s plant-based yakiniku, Laos' meat-less larb (meat salad) and Malaysia’s plant-based ayam goreng.

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