CellMEAT, a South Korean company developing cultivated shrimp, has secured $8.1 million (10 billion KRW) in Series A, bringing its total raised to $14.1 million.
The cellular agriculture startup will now double pilot production of its cultivated shrimp before entering the B2B and B2C market in Singapore within the next 12 months. The Gwangju-based company will also develop other cultivated seafood product lines, including lobster and crab, as first reported by TechCrunch.
Singapore provides the perfect launchpad for CellMEAT’s cultivated shrimp as the only country so far to have given regulatory approval for cultivated meat products on the commercial market. The company recently revealed the development of a new cell culture medium without foetal bovine serum, which it claims will help reduce production costs in the sector significantly.
Alt Seafood in Asia
CellMEAT looks set to position itself at the forefront of the alt seafood boom in the APAC region with its cultivated seafood offerings. A recent GFI report has highlighted the rapid growth of the emerging market in Asia with by far the highest amount of investment and research activity taking place in the region where most of the world’s fish is consumed, thus presenting the most lucrative opportunities.
“Last year, the global commercial landscape welcomed at least 21 new alternative seafood companies, bringing the total to more than 120 companies developing plant-based, fermentation-enabled, and cultivated seafood around the world. Sensing a sea change in public opinion, 2021 also saw record global investments in alt seafood, nearly doubling 2020’s total”, explained Ryan Huling of the GFI APAC.