Venture Capital: Andreessen Horowitz Is Lead Investor In SCiFi Foods Series A

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SCiFi Foods is targeting to be the first company to bring cultivated beef to the US market.

SCiFi Foods, a food tech startup that is creating beef using both plant-based and real cultivated beef cells, has raised a $22 million Series A round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). The company was founded in 2019 by Joshua March, CEO, and Kasia Gora, CTO. (Yahoo News)

Vijay Pande, general partner at Andreessen, said in a blog post that the cattle industry is responsible for a majority of the deforestation of the Amazon as well as a top emitter of methane, one of the most potent greenhouse gases.

Meat cultivated from cells inside bioreactors has become technologically feasible, but still suffers from a prohibitive cost of production. However, SCiFi is addressing that problem, according to Pande, by using its cultivated beef cells to make products that combine plant-based and cultivated meat, which could solve two major challenges in these respective spaces: “a lack of optimal taste in plant-based products and the difficulty of creating 3D muscle and tissue structures from 100% cultivated meat cells at scale.”

March is focused on first creating a burger that tastes amazing (“its a good product already”). However, the USFDA would have to clear the process, while the US Department of Agriculture would need to approve the facility and the final labelling of the product. All that could take a couple of years.

Nevertheless, it’s Pande’s view that “SCiFi Foods is well positioned to become one of the defining brands of this generation while reducing the impact of conventional meat production on our planet.”

Related Story: Upside Foods Scores $400M For Producing Cultivated Meat At Scale

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