Mosa Meat, the Dutch start-up developing cell-based meat that counts Switzerland’s Bell Food Group as an investor, said today (25 September) it had raised US$55m as part of its Series B funding round.

The company, which seven years ago unveiled the world’s first cell-based hamburger, announced “the first closing of $55M as part of a larger Series B funding round”. The Maastricht-based business plans to use the money to expand its pilot production facility and set up an “industrial-sized” line. Mosa Meat has yet to announce a date when it plans to launch products to consumers.

Bell Food Group, which was also on-board in Mosa Meat’s Series A funding, took part in the round but it was led by Blue Horizon Ventures. The VC fund has backed companies, including meat-free supplier The Live Kindly Co. and Heartbest, the Mexican plant-based cheese start-up, which are doing business in markets for alternatives to meat and dairy proteins.

“With their support and capabilities, we have the opportunity to take the next concrete steps to scale production, make progress towards a cleaner, kinder way of making real beef, and ultimately increase the resilience, sustainability, and safety of our global food system,” Mosa Meat CEO Maarten Bosch said.

The cost of production is a key hurdle to commercialisation for start-ups working on cell-based alternatives to meat, seafood and dairy. In Mosa Meat’s statement on the Series B funding, the company said it had achieved an “88 times reduction in growth medium cost” during 2019 and 2020.

In a statement, Blue Horizon Ventures said: “At BHV we are truly impressed by Mosa Meat’s team, technology and significant improvements on scaling and medium cost reduction in recent quarters. We also believe, that a GMO-free production process gives the company a competitive edge specifically in Europe.”

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just-food deep dive, August 2020: A question of scale – the growing pains of cell-based meat