Mosa Meat, the Netherlands-based company known for creating the world’s first lab-grown hamburger, announced today it has raised $55 million as part of a larger Series B round. The round was led by Blue Horizon Ventures with participation from Bell Food Group, M Ventures, and others.
Earlier this year, the company said it had achieved a more than 80x reduction in the cost of the growth medium it uses for its lab-grown meat. That’s one heck of a reduction, considering the Mosa Meat’s original hamburger cost $325,000. The company also opened a new pilot production plant.
Especially noteworthy is that in 2019, Mosa Meat successfully removed Fetal Bovine Serum (FBS), which is both expensive and ethically controversial, from its growth medium. According to a company blog post from July, removing FBS from the medium helped bring down overall costs, which in turn gets Mosa Meat closer to achieving price parity with traditional meat. Reaching that price parity will be crucial to selling the average consumer on the idea of eating burgers and other meats grown in a lab. Achieving the right texture and taste are also critical components for cell-based meat products.
The cell-based meat category has seen a huge uptick in investment over the last several months, and for more than just burgers. IntegriCulture, a company making lab-grown foie gras, raised $7.4 million in May and got a $2.2 million grant in August. BlueNalu raised $20 million in February for its cell-based seafood. Overall, the cell-based meat category has received more than $290 million in investment for 2020.
Mosa Meat says it will use its new funds to extend its current pilot production facility, expand its team, and develop an industrial-sized production line. It will also “introduce delicious cultivated beef to consumers,” though no specific date for that is set. For now, the company said it will work with European regulators to demonstrate the safety of cell-based meat and get regulatory approval to “serve consumers in Europe who are craving change.”