The company is currently transitioning its commercial products to pilot plant. The pilot launch is planned for the end of 2022
Aleph Farms has prototyped its commercial product – thin-cut beef steaks grown directly from non-GMO cells of a living cow. The company has developed five modules for its mass production platform, set to bring the product to cost parity with conventional meat at scale.
The prototype will be introduced at the Asia-Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit on November 20th in Singapore as part of a virtual cooking demonstration hosted by Aleph Farms’ resident chef and VisVires New Protein VC.
The company has built on the proof-of-concept released in 2018, increased the size of its slaughter-free product, and adapted it to fit controlled, automated bioprocesses, aiming to ensure economic viability in large-scale production.
“One of the big challenges of cultivated meat is the ability to produce large quantities efficiently at a cost that can compete with conventional meat industry pricing, without compromising on quality,” said Didier Toubia, Co-Founder and CEO of Aleph Farms. “We have developed five technological building blocks unique to Aleph Farms that are put into a large-scale production process, all patented by the company.”
Aleph Farms says its platform for cultivating steaks effectively mirrors the natural process of tissue regeneration processes that occur in the animal’s body, but outside of it and under controlled conditions.
The company mimics the extra-cellular matrix found in animals with a plant-based matrix that enables the cells to grow and form structured tissues of meat. Its ‘cell-banks’ yield a source of pluripotent, non-GMO cow cells’ for growing meat.
Aleph Farms has designed tissue cultivators to facilitate the biological process occurring in vivo, providing the warmth and basic animal-free elements needed to build tissue in nature. This includes water, proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals.
The company has diligently perfected the structure of its product so that it embodies the familiar texture, taste, cooking behavior, as well nutritional qualities of conventional slaughter-based steaks.
“It’s not enough to just make a protein that will fill the nutritional gap; we need to capture the fullness of the meat-eating experience,” said Toubia. “Meat can be cultivated from cells isolated from different animal breeds, have different cuts, and it elicits different emotions. We see Aleph Farms as crafters of experiences.”