Hoxton Farms Announces Strategic Hires from GOOD Meat and Aleph Farms to Accelerate Cultivated Fat

After opening the UK’s first pilot production facility for cultivated fat, Hoxton Farms announces two strategic executive hires from leading cultivated meat companies GOOD Meat — a subsidiary of Eat Just — and Aleph Farms, to propel the company’s cultivated fat into its next commercialisation phase.

The UK aims to become a leading food tech and biotechnology hub. The government has invested £12 million in a cellular agriculture hub, and recently, it unveiled a £2 billion plan to seize the potential of biotechnology for novel foods and medicines and sustainable fuel. While the government has been looking to streamline the approval for cultivated meat to boost food security and sustainability, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has released new guidance on cell-cultivated products and the authorisation process to bring them to market in Great Britain.

Bringing world-class talent to the UK

“Our recently opened pilot facility is a statement of our intent to scale up our production and bring world-class talent to the UK,” said Max Jamilly, co-founder of Hoxton Farms.

Vítor Espirito Santo, previously Senior Director of Cellular Agriculture at GOOD Meat in San Francisco, USA, has been appointed Head of Cell Biology to lead the company in its regulatory strategy. He has over 15 years of experience in biomedical research, with a PhD in tissue engineering and stem cells. At GOOD Meat, he led the team responsible for the world’s first regulatory approval of cultivated meat in Singapore and subsequent approval in the US. Additionally, through his leadership, Espirito Santo has also contributed to improvements in animal cell lines and high-quality meat products, leveraging cost-competitive approaches while assuring regulatory and safety compliance, explains Hoxton Farms. 

Nadav Tal joins Hoxton Farms as Systems Engineering Lead to focus on bioreactor development. He is the former Director of R&D Engineering at the Israeli cultivated meat company Aleph Farms (which this year has submitted dossiers for regulatory approval in the UK and Switzerland). At Aleph Farms, Nadav engineered tissue bioreactors specifically for cellular agriculture. He previously worked at TransAlgae, designing novel bioreactors and establishing an industrial microalgae farm which is still operational today. Nadav has a degree in Mechanical Engineering, specialising in biomechanical design, from Ben Gurion University.

© Hoxton Farms

Hybrid products

According to Hoxton Farms, the new experts will help the company accelerate its production timeline, develop a consumer product, and navigate the regulatory approval process to commercialise its ingredient for hybrid meat products (combining cultivated fat with plant-based protein). The firm has developed a cultivation platform and proprietary bioreactors to grow the fat from cells using animal-free culture media. Its platform uses machine learning and mathematical modelling to streamline the process.

“The combination of plant-based protein and cultivated fat is a fascinating innovation”

Last year, the cell-based fat pioneer raised $22 million to build its recently opened 13,000-square-foot pilot facility in Shoreditch, East London, to expand its operations to commercial scale. The company estimates it will produce ten tonnes of cultivated fat per year at the new facility while achieving price parity with vegetable oils.

“The combination of plant-based protein and cultivated fat is a fascinating innovation that will create huge commercial opportunities for food companies looking to provide eco-conscious and flexitarian consumers with delicious meat alternatives,” comments Espirito Santo. “I’m excited to move to London and work with an excellent team to develop Hoxton Farms’ groundbreaking R&D into new consumer products built on cultivated fat,” he adds.

>> Click here to go to Cultivated X where you will see a familiar layout and a focus solely on content regarding cellular agriculture, including fermentation-enabled products, and with more granular categories.

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