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25th January 2021  Content supplied by: Aleph Farms

Aleph Farms and Mitsubishi Want to Accelerate Adoption of Cultured Meat in Japan

After Singapore, another Eastern country makes the news in the cultured meat space.

Cultured meat start-up Aleph Farms, and Mitsubishi Corporation’s Food Industry Group signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to bring cultivated meat to the Japanese table. Aleph Farms will provide its manufacturing platform (BioFarm™) for cultivation of whole-muscle steaks. Mitsubishi Corporation will provide its expertise in biotechnology processes, branded food manufacturing, and local distribution channels in Japan.

“The MoU with Mitsubishi marks an important milestone for us, as we methodically build the foundations of our global go-to-market activities with selected partners,” notes Didier Toubia, Co-Founder and CEO of Aleph Farms.

Mitsubishi is a global business with 1,700 group companies in 90 countries, with yearly revenue of US$140B. The Corporation is comprised of 10 Business Groups covering virtually every industry. One of them, the Food Industry Group is active in every link of the food supply chain, from the production and sourcing of raw materials to finished food products.

This partnership is perfectly in line with the goal of the Japanese government of achieving zero greenhouse gas emissions. In April 2020, Aleph Farms committed to eliminating emissions associated with its meat production by 2025 and reach the same net-zero emissions across its entire supply chain by 2030.

Aleph Farms' initiative is part of a network of strategic partnerships called ‘BioFarm to Fork’ that the startup is developing in APAC, LATAM, and Europe, following the successful 2019 Round-A strategic investment by Cargill and the Migros Group in Switzerland.

Bringing cultured meat to Japan will give an important contribution to Japan's lack of self-sufficiency in food products. Although the country has the world's third largest economy, it has to import over 60% of its food. This dependency is particularly visible with the animal protein of choice for many Japanese people, seafood, whose demand outweighs supply, causing prices to rise and leading many consumers to opt for more accessible products like beef, pork and lamb. Traditionally, the US are the main meat importer, although in recent years Japan diversified its suppliers including the EU as well.

“The cooperation demonstrates Aleph Farms’ strategy of working together with the food and meat industries to ensure a successful integration of cultivated meat within the ecosystem, while maximizing the positive impact we make,” adds Toubia. “We are excited to bring cultivated meat production closer to the Japanese market.”



Date Published: 25th January 2021

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