Korean startup Devotion Foods is using proprietary technology to develop products that it hopes will convince people to switch away from meat. The innovation has won its founders a spot on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Enterprise Technology list.
On its website, Devotion Foods says it aims to tackle the health, safety, and environmental issues associated with meat consumption. Its products are made with a mixture of textured vegetable protein (TVP) and grains, and they brown and “bleed” like real meat. The startup spent 18 months developing the technology in collaboration with chefs from two Michelin star restaurants.
According to the company, its meat alternatives are a healthier option than conventional meat because they are higher in protein and free of cholesterol. They also don’t contain GMOs.
Devotion Foods has already raised $4.6 million in funding and is working with GS Retail and the conglomerate CJ to distribute its products.
Plant-based eating in Korea
A study last year found that the plant-based industry has tripled in South Korea over the past decade, with a fifth of the population now eating less meat. Millennials in the country are driving the growth, and “vegan zones” are appearing in many large Korean supermarkets.
Most recently, the plant-based Whopper has launched at Burger King restaurants in the country, while Korean startups such as SeaWith and CellMEAT are working on cell-cultured alt-meat products.
“We started Devotion Foods with the desire to present delicious moments to people and to contribute to society with sustainable food,” the company says. “With our commitment to create safe and healthy food for future generations, we will achieve our vision of expanding beyond the domestic market and overseas.”