Upside Foods, the cell-protein business formerly known as Memphis Meats, has bought Cultured Decadence, a US peer focused on cultivated seafood.

Financial terms were not disclosed. In a statement, Upside Foods said the acquisition would expand its product portfolio and “accelerate commercialisation” of its seafood products.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

Cultured Decadence, set up two years ago in Wisconsin, has developed cell lines and cell feed for seafood including lobster “and other crustaceans”, Upside Foods added.

“Seafood has a rich and delicious culinary tradition that makes it a favourite across the globe. Cultivated seafood also has a tremendous potential to benefit the world,” Dr. Uma Valeti, Upside Foods’ founder and CEO, said. “Cultured Decadence’s technology is incredibly promising, and their team is filled with passionate, smart individuals who want to make our favourite food a force for good.”

California-based Upside Foods was set up in 2015, focusing at first on cell-cultivated meat products. The earliest products the company developed were meatballs, chicken and duck. Upside Foods has yet to announce the development of “any specific seafood products” but has “made progress on certain marine species prior to the acquisition”, the business told Just Food. The first food it plans to bring to the market is cell-cultivated chicken.

In 2017, the firm attracted investment from agri-food giant Cargill and, a year later, secured financial backing from Tyson Foods, the US meat major and world’s largest poultry producer. Tyson backed Upside Foods – which changed its name from Memphis Meats last year – again in 2020.

Cultured Decadence received US$1.6m in pre-seed funding last year. Contributors to the pre-seed round included Chicago-based venture-capital fund Bluestein Ventures and peer Joyance Partners in San Francisco, along with Chinese investment firm Dao Foods.

John Pattison, the firm’s CEO who previously worked for US cell-based meat company New Age Meats, founded Cultured Decadence with chief scientific officer Ian Johnson having come up with the idea to create sustainable seafood products with a “dramatically lower” environmental footprint in 2019.

In a joint statement, Pattison and Johnson, who will both join Upside Foods, said: “Upside’s unparalleled R&D and scale up capabilities will significantly accelerate the commercialisation of cultivated delicious, sustainable and humane seafood.”

Just Food guide: Leading the charge – the companies at the cutting edge of cell-based protein product development

Just Food guide: Eyeing alternatives – meat companies with stakes in meat-free and cell-based meat