Aleph Farms, Ltd, the Israel-based foodtech startup which revealed its cultivated steak for market in November; was able to “grow steak” in space; and gave a taste of cultivated meat to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last month – now announces a signed MoU with Mitsubishi to bring cultivated meat to the Japanese table.
Mitsubishi Corporation will provide its expertise in biotechnology processes, branded food manufacturing, and local distribution channels in Japan. Aleph Farms will provide its proven, scalable manufacturing platform (BioFarm™) for cultivation of whole-muscle steaks.
“The MoU with Mitsubishi Corporation’s Food Industry Group marks an important milestone for us, as we methodically build the foundations of our global go-to-market activities with selected partners,” notes Didier Toubia, Co-Founder and CEO of Aleph Farms.
Mitsubishi Corporation is a global integrated business enterprise that develops and operates a global network of 1,700 group companies in 90 countries. With yearly revenue of US$140B, Mitsubishi Corporation is comprised of 10 Business Groups covering virtually every industry. The Food Industry Group covers food resources, fresh foods, consumer products, and food ingredients, and is active in every link of the food supply chain, from the production and sourcing of raw materials to the manufacturing of finished food products.
“The cooperation demonstrates Aleph Farms’ strategy of working together with the food and meat industries to ensure a successful integration of cultivated meat within the ecosystem, while maximizing the positive impact we make,” adds Toubia. “We are excited to bring cultivated meat production closer to the Japanese market.”
This cooperation takes a lead role in the fight against climate change, especially now that the Japanese government stipulated a goal of achieving zero greenhouse gas emissions. In April 2020, Aleph Farms committed to eliminating emissions associated with its meat production by 2025 and reach the same net-zero emissions across its entire supply chain by 2030. As the demand for meat continues to rise with evolving lifestyles, the cooperation will also provide actionable solutions to overcome the societal challenges to the local population surrounding the domestic meat supply. This includes implementing stable food channels of quality nutrition.
“This is part of a network of ‘BioFarm to Fork’ strategic partnerships being developed by Aleph Farms in APAC, LATAM, and Europe, following the successful 2019 Round-A strategic investment by Cargill and the Migros Group in Switzerland,” reports Gary Brenner, VP of Market Development at Aleph Farms.
Aleph Farms and Mitsubishi Corporation are members of the “Cellular Agriculture Study Group”, a consortium implementing policy proposals under the Japanese Center for Rule-Making Strategy. The consortium brings together a range of experts on the definition and construction of cellular agricultural foods. It also adds clarification of conditions for Japanese products and technologies to have international competitiveness and establishes mechanisms for coexistence and division of roles with existing industries.