Cocuus raises funds to upscale alt-protein 3D bioprinting technology


Spanish start-up Cocuus has elevated €2.5M ($2.7M) in its pre-Series A funding spherical.

The cash will be used to scale up its 3D bioprinting method for developing plant or mobile-based animal protein meals analogs. 

The corporation just lately finished the Eatable Adventures acceleration plan, one particular of the top a few global accelerators for foodtech commence-ups. Eatable Adventures has launched far more than 25 corporate courses, and has a deal stream of 2,200 world food-tech begin-ups each yr.

In 2021 Eatable Adventures introduced a €50M fund for investing in early-stage foods and agriculture tech startups throughout Europe and Latin America. 

The funding round was led by Big Concept Ventures, the international alternative protein fund, the U.S. multinational Cargill Ventures, Eatable Adventures and Tech Transfer UPV. 

Cocuus stated the money will also make it possible for it to broaden into other worldwide markets to create more sustainable and healthy food items.

Founder and running normal associate of 1 of the traders, Massive Notion Ventures, Andrew D Ive, stated: “At Massive Plan Ventures, we commit in technological innovation which impacts the different protein industry’s whole price chain. Cocuus’ technological innovation addresses a significant pain place of structured plant- and cell-centered meat production solutions: scalability.” 

The method

Last yr, Cocuus produced synthetic meat cutlets using a 3D printer. The foodstuff can be made from a compound centered on animal cells, which can come from considerably less usable areas of a cow, or for a vegan market place, they can be developed in a bioreactor. 

Also, the cutlets can be made applying peas.

As effectively as the meat cutlets, the corporation can manufacture bacon or lamb ribs in the exact same way and have been equipped to replicate the approach to build artificial salmon fillets. 

The course of action can be begun utilizing a mixture of meat or vegetable substance. However, the organization said the original cells can be shaped in bioreactors, by a method that only involves using a modest sample from an animal, and not killing it.

Its stem cells are then utilised to construct the fibers from which the synthetic meat would then be printed. 

The combination incorporates binders and other substances to give it taste and let the food items to keep its construction when becoming cooked. 

The enterprise said though there is a blend of elements, it is only a few or 4, so it is not so processed.

But how does the corporation know what to print?

1st, a CAT scan is carried out to locate exactly where the fats, meat, bones and vascular pathways are. These images are then translated to vectors, then a 3D-map the printer can work with.

The printing is completed with two extruders, just one for meat, one for body fat. It is a equipment with variable geometry, so different shapes can be formed.

Cocuus stated the most essential portion of the equation is that it will be equipped to manufacture on an industrial scale, many thanks to its machinery that can produce 10kg of synthetic meat for each minute. To obtain this, the company has created a equipment with 300 extruders working in parallel, which it said is equivalent to the way pixels create digital images.

Cocuus, alongside with MOA Foodtech, Proppos, H2hydroponics, and Innomy, has been picked as finalists for the initial edition of Eatable Adventures’ acceleration software Spain Foodtech. 

Cows are “the new coal”

In accordance to FAO details, in 2050, in get to feed a inhabitants of 9.1 billion, food creation will have to raise by 70% and meat output by more than 200 million tons.

Printed meat is just one technique of developing choices to animal-primarily based products and solutions. Many others, these kinds of as precision fermentation, are a sizzling topic at the minute as new strategies of developing food stuff this kind of as meat and dairy arise. The objective is to deliver food items to meet the needs of a growing population, though also cutting down the environmental stresses produced by traditional animal farming. 

Jeremy Coller, chair and founder of The FAIRR Initiative, an investor network supported by buyers taking care of $52 trillion of belongings, explained, “The submit-COP26 era leaves substantial elements of the meat and dairy supply chain searching out-of-date and unattractive. Failures from methane to manure administration underline the developing feeling in the market that cows are the new coal.”

He added: “As the most significant driver of both equally methane from human exercise and deforestation, the ambitions established at COP26 handed a massive slice of obligation to the meals and agriculture sector. We can not deliver the COP26 commitments without the need of addressing the protein offer chain.

“More political and regulatory target on the foodstuff business is now inevitable, but now, only 20% of meat and dairy giants evaluate even some section of their methane emissions. This must be a purple flag to marketplaces provided the COP26 determination to cut down methane 30% globally by 2030.”


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Ellen C. McGowan

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