BlueNalu announced yesterday the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with Pulmuone Co. Ltd, a Seoul-based producer of traditional perishable foods such as tofu and bean sprouts. This move marks BlueNalu’s first collaboration in South Korea and Pulmuone’s interest in cellbased seafood.
As we reported last month, vegan industry in South Korea has tripled in ten years with a fifth of consumers now reducing meat intake. However, global demand for seafood is at an all-time high and continues to increase, particularly in Asia, where the two companies believe cell-based seafood can supplement the current supply of sea fish, which is not only drastically becoming extinct but is increasingly contaminated with toxins and parasites.
This February, in what was reportedly the largest Series A raise in cell-based history, BlueNalu received $20 million in Series A funding from strategic investors which included Pulmuone as well as Griffith Foods, Nutreco, Rich Product Ventures, and KBW Ventures. Together the two companies will collaborate to bring BlueNalu’s products to markets in South Korea during the coming years.
“This agreement with Pulmuone represents our shared values and respect for healthy families, a healthy ocean, and a healthy planet,” stated Lou Cooperhouse, president & CEO of BlueNalu. “We plan to launch BlueNalu cell-based seafood products initially in the United States, but we also recognize there is significant and increasing market demand for high quality seafood in South Korea, while supply becomes increasingly vulnerable and potentially contaminated with microplastics, mercury, and environmental pollutants. Partnerships are critical for our success and we are proud to partner with Pulmuone.”
“This is an exciting collaboration with BlueNalu that we anticipate will allow us to introduce cell-based seafood products in South Korea that we know our customers will enjoy,” said Sang Yun Lee, CTO, Pulmuone Co. Ltd. “While a product launch is still several years away, we recognize that the global seafood supply is compromised, unpredictable and cannot keep up with demand, so our mutual goal is to accelerate BlueNalu’s introduction to our customers with a product that meets consumer expectations in terms of taste, texture and nutrition, while also providing benefits for the planet and the well-being of families.”