Redefine Meat’s 3D-printed, plant-based “meat” raises $29mn
Rehovot, Israel-based food technology startup Redefine Meat does what it says on the tin in the form of it’s so-called “Alt-meat” products.
I’ll take mine 3D-printed
While alternative meats are picking up in popularity, to the extent that KFC and have both featured meat alternatives in their restaurants, Redefine Meat’s approach differs in that it utilises additive manufacturing.
The company says that its process is capable of producing plant-based meat alternatives on an industrial scale, with a production facility scheduled for completion later this year. A recent blind-tasting of its products was said to have demonstrated a “90% acceptance rate among meat eaters”, replicating both the texture and flavour of meat.
Significant foodtech backing
The company has today a $29mn Series A round led by Happiness Capital and Hanaco Ventures, alongside CPT Capital, Losa Group, Sake Bosch and K3 Ventures. The company last raised $6mn in a from 2019 led by CPT Capital alongside Hanaco Venture Capital and PHW Group.
"We are thrilled to have concluded this round of funding with such a unique and diverse group of highly experienced, professional investors who share our vision," Eshchar Ben-Shitrit, CEO and Co-founder of Redefine Meat. "This funding, which was concluded faster and better than we could have imagined a year ago, is a major step towards becoming the world's biggest alternative meat company by 2030."
The company said it would use the funds to expand its product portfolio in anticipation of commercial launch in 2021.
Ben-Shitrit added : "We want to change the belief that delicious meat can only come from animals, and we have all the building blocks in place to make this a reality: high-quality meat products, strategic partnerships with stakeholders across the world, a large-scale pilot line under construction, and the first-ever industrial 3D Alt-Meat printers set to be deployed within meat distributors later this year."
Dark Wolf: accelerating security for USAF
As a small company whose biggest customers are the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, Dark Wolf Solutions (Dark Wolf) is a triple-threat, specializing in Cybersecurity, Software and DevOps, and Management Solutions. Dark Wolf secures and tests cloud platforms, develops and deploys applications, and offers consultancy services performing system engineering, system integration, and mission support.
The break for Dark Wolf came when the Department of Defense decided to explore software factories. Rick Tossavainen, Dark Wolf’s CEO, thinks it was an inspired path for the DoD to take. “It was a really great decision,” he says, “Let’s pull our people together as part of this digital transformation and recreate what Silicon Valley startup firms typically have. Let’s get into commercial facilities where we have open windows and big whiteboards and just promote ideation and collaboration. And it creates this collaborative environment where people start creating things much more rapidly than before.”
It has been, Tossavainen says, “amazing to watch” and has energized the Federal Contracting Sector with an influx of new talent and improved working environments that foster creativity and innovative ways of approaching traditional problems.
“We originally started working with the US Air Force about three years ago. The problem was at the time you could develop all the software you wanted but you couldn’t get it into production – you had to go through the traditional assessment and authorization process. I talked to Lauren Knausenberger and she told me about Kessel Run and what eventually came out of this was the DoD’s first continuous ATO [Authority To Operate].”
The secret to Dark Wolf’s success – and its partnerships with USAF and Space Force – lies in a client-first attitude. “We’re not looking to maximise revenue,” Tossavainen explains. “We tell all of our employees, if you’re ever faced with an issue and you don’t know how to resolve it, and one solution is better for the customer and the second is better for Dark Wolf, you always do number one. We’ve just got to take care of our customers, and I look for other partners that want to do that. And let’s work together so that we can bring them the best answer we can.”
Rapid releases and constant evolution of software are common themes among USAF’s partners. Like many firms operating in the commercial and public sector spaces, Dark Wolf leads with a DevSecOps approach.
“Failure is tolerated,” says Tossavainen. “If it’s not going the right way in three months, let’s adjust. Let’s rapidly change course. And you can tell really quickly if something’s going to be successful or not, because they’re doing deployments multiple times a day – to the customer.”