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BioTech Foods & JBS Lead Global Shift in Cultivated Meat, Impacting ANZ Meat Industry

Spain's cultivated meat company, BioTech Foods, is embarking on a new chapter in its journey towards global sustainable food production. The company, headquartered in San Sebastián, recently signed an agreement with JBS, the world's largest protein producer based in Brazil. This strategic move positions JBS as the majority shareholder of BioTech Foods, injecting 36 million euros into the venture.


Traditional animal based protein producers like Australia and New Zealand should be sitting up-right and paying attention to this development, perhaps the pivotal paradigm change of 'animal protein' production per se.


This collaboration is a strategic leap towards fast-tracking the production of cultivated meat, addressing the rising global demand for sustainable protein sources. By combining BioTech Foods' expertise in protein production and technology with JBS's industrial processing capacity and expansive sales channels, the partnership aims to bring cultivated meat to international markets.

AI Generated Cultivated Meat Plant

Source: Clipdrop by Stability ai


BioTech Foods, founded in 2017, has been a frontrunner in the cultivated meat sector, with ongoing research and development efforts supported by the Spanish Government and the European Union. The company operates a pilot plant and plans to achieve commercial production by mid-2024 through the construction of a state-of-the-art manufacturing unit.


'This new plant will allow us to increase production capacity to face the company’s next phase of expansion. Without a doubt, this will be a very important milestone for us, since it will mean a great step in the development of our technology and will allow us to take the definitive leap with the release of the product on the market', says Íñigo Charola, CEO of BioTech Foods.


JBS's investment by BioTech Foods will fund the construction of a groundbreaking 11,000 m2 R&D and production facility in Eskusaitzeta, Donostia, marking a significant milestone in the company's growth and leadership in the cultivated meat production sector. This new plant, poised to be the largest in southern Europe, will serve as a hub for innovation and efficient production of cultivated meat.

AI Generated Cultivated Meat Plant

Source: Clipdrop by Stability ai


BioTech Foods envisions further expansion, with plans to build future plants and grow its workforce to 150 employees, catering to the burgeoning demand for sustainable protein. By embracing this emerging market's potential, the company aims to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of food production.


The cultivated meat industry faces challenges such as volume and cost of production. However, the new BioTech Foods plant is set to address these issues by establishing a highly efficient production line, aligning with global sustainability goals and providing a more balanced food production system.


The foodtech sector, including the production of alternative proteins like cultivated meat, has gained significant momentum, positioning Spain as a key player in Europe's foodtech ecosystem. Investment in the sector has tripled, showcasing the country's commitment to advancing sustainable food systems.


As the world's appetite for sustainable protein grows, partnerships like the one between BioTech Foods and JBS represent a pivotal step towards a more sustainable and prosperous future.

Source: Clipdrop by Stability ai


However the impact of this development on New Zealand and Australia's entrenched animal agricultural sector is expected to be profound. With cultivated meat gaining traction as a sustainable and efficient alternative, these traditional agricultural nations may face increasing pressure to adapt their strategies and embrace this technological shift.


'We believe that this new plant will give us a significant competitive advantage in this emerging market, in addition to facilitating the progressive increase in production capacity, something that will allow us to respond to both current and future market needs globally', says the CEO of BioTech Foods.


The partnership between BioTech Foods and JBS signifies a global trend towards sustainable protein production, challenging the status quo and prompting a reevaluation of traditional farming practices in the region.


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