US cell-based firm New Age Meats has secured US$2m from investors just six months after raising $2.7m in seed funding from a consortium of backers.

The California company said the new seed extension funding will help it to continue to develop cell-based, or cultivated, pork products.

Specifically, it plans to further expand its food science department, implement more automation and robotics and continue to attempt to reduce the cost of its first lab-produced product, a pork sausage. 

The seed extension round was led by TechU Ventures, an early stage investment firm specialising in “deep tech”.

Natanel Barookhian, the managing partner of TechU, has joined the company’s board as an observer. 

FF Venture Capital, the lead investor from New Age Meats’ previous round, also participated in the extension, along with follow-on investments from SOSV, Sand Hill Angels, and Siddhi Capital. Guatemala-based Losa Group and members of San Diego Tech Coast Angels also invested this time round. 

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New Age Meats CEO Brian Spears said: “Food science is incredibly important to our overall mission. We make meat that consumers prefer to conventional meat. That requires us to invest in understanding how we perceive animal protein. What is the science behind the experience of smelling, seeing, and eating tasty meat? The mission of our company is to make safer meat without slaughter, but we will never be successful unless our products are delicious. With an expanded food science department we are able to deliver on that promise.”

New Age Meats said it is now working towards building a pilot facility, scaling product development and production and getting its first products to market. 

The company was founded in 2018 and is a graduate of IndieBio, a four-month accelerator programme based in California providing $250,000 to early stage biology start-ups.