Tyson Ventures, the venture capital arm of Tyson Foods, will co-lead a $2.2 million seed investment in Future Meat Technologies. Jerusalem-based Future Meat aims to greatly reduce the cost of meat made directly from animal cells through next-generation manufacturing technology. Company founder and chief scientist Yaakov Nahmias said his team has been able to decrease the production price from $5,000 per pound to $400 per pound and hopes to reduce that to $5 per pound by 2020. In addition to Tyson Ventures, other participants in this round of investment funding, included the Neto Group, one of the largest food conglomerates in Israel; S2G Ventures, a Chicago-based venture capital fund; BitsXBites, China’s first food technology venture capital fund; and Agrinnovation, an Israeli investment fund founded by Yissum, the Technology Transfer Company of The Hebrew University, and New York-based HB Ventures. Through this funding, Future Meat Technologies plans to establish engineering activities and increase its biological research. “This is our first investment in an Israel-based company and we’re excited about this opportunity to broaden our exposure to innovative, new ways of producing protein,” said Justin Whitmore, executive vice president, corporate strategy and chief sustainability officer of Tyson Foods. “We continue to invest significantly in our traditional meat business but also believe in exploring additional opportunities for growth that give consumers more choices.” In January, Tyson invested in cultured meat company Memphis Meats.
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