Shiok Meats, a cell-based meat company, today announced that it has raised US$12.6 million in a series A funding round led by sustainable aquaculture-focused investment fund Aqua-Spark.
Seeds Capital, Japan’s Real Tech Fund, South Korea’s tech investing family office Irongrey, Yellowdog Empowers Fund, Ilshin Holdings Pte. Ltd., Toyo Seikan Group Holdings, Veg Invest Trust, Makana Ventures, AiiM Partners, Beyond Impact, Kelvin Chan Siang Lin, Alex Payne, and Nicole Brodeur also participated in the round.
Founded in August 2018 by Sandhya Sriram and Ka Yi Ling, the Singapore-based company claims to be the first cell-based meat company in Southeast Asia.
Its flagship product is cell-based shrimp, which the company describes as a clean, traceable alternative to what the shrimp farming industry offers. The shrimp market is a US$50 billion one globally, with Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, and India as major producers, according to Shiok.
Currently, most of shrimps are raised in “crowded factories or farms and treated with antibiotics, chemicals, and hormones.” Additionally, the conventional production processes often contribute to “overfishing, excessive bycatch, misrepresentation, and mislabeling as well as contamination with effluents, heavy metals, and microplastics.”
Shiok said it aims to address these issues by producing clean meat, which is said to reduce the industry’s greenhouse gas emissions by 96%, energy consumption by 45%, land use by 99%, and water consumption by 96%.
What are its future plans? The new funds will go toward building a commercial pilot plant from which Shiok plans to launch its minced shrimp product in 2022, according to a statement.
Beyond cell-based shrimp meat for dumplings and other shrimp-based dishes, it also plans to launch shrimp flavoring paste and powder, fully-formed 3D shrimp, and cell-based lobster and crab products in the coming years.
What is its funding history?
- Bridge round (2020): US$3 million from Agronomics, VegInvest, Impact Venture, and Mindshift Capital Fund
- Seed round (2019): US$4.6 million from Monde Nissin CEO Henry Soesanto (lead), Y Combinator, Entrepreneur First, AiiM Partners Fund, Big Idea Ventures, AeraVC, Beyond Impact Ventures, Boom Capital, Twynam Investments, and some angel investors
- Pre-seed round (2019): US$500,000 from Y Combinator, AiiM Partners, Boom Capital, and Wild Earth CEO and co-founder Ryan Bethencourt