Alt-meat startup Atlast Food Co. announces the company is officially re-branding as MyForest Foods. The new name is meant to reflect the natural growing environment of mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms used to make alternative protein.
Founded in 2020, MyForest Foods utilizes mycelium’s dense and meaty texture to create realistic, animal-free bacon. Through proprietary AirMycelium cultivation, developed by parent company Ecovative, MyForest Foods is able to control the mycelium’s specific shape and thickness throughout the growth process, imitating the same environmental regulations found in nature.
Mycelium bacon boom
The company will continue to produce MyBacon, the brand’s flagship whole-cut, fungi-based bacon product, with additional product releases planned. Earlier this month, MyForest Foods announced a partnership with Canada’s Whitecrest Mushrooms Ltd. to commercialize MyBacon on a huge dedicated vertical farm. At full capacity, the new facility is expected to produce nearly three million pounds of mycelium-based bacon each year, with further expansion possible.
In April, MyForest Foods received $40 million in funding from an investor lineup that included actor Robert Downey Jr.’s Footprint Coalition Ventures. Prior to that, the company’s limited pre-order sale of MyBacon swiftly sold out the entire production run through 2023. At present, MyBacon can be purchased at the Honest Weight Food Co-op in Albany, NY.
A natural move
MyForest Foods hopes the brand’s new name inspires consumers to meaningfully connect its innovative products with mycelium’s natural origins.
“Replicating Mother Earth’s magic, we simulate the forest inside our vertical farms — cool rains, evening fog, morning mist, and afternoon breezes create just the right environment for our mycelium to grow, weaving into delicate, precise, and tender whole-cuts for the world to enjoy,” said Eben Bayer, Chief Executive Officer of MyForest Foods. “The forest, philosophically and physically, is where we hail from, so this felt like a natural move. ‘From the forest. For the future,’ our new company tagline, captures our essence and purpose.”