Good Startup, a cross-border VC firm seeking to remove animals from the global food ecosystem, has launched a US$25-million fund to invest in alternative protein startups.
Called ‘Good Protein Fund I’, the fund aims to invest in a total of 32 companies.
Its notable investors are Anil Thadani (Chairman, Symphony Asia Holdings), Tan Kim Seng (Chairman, Kim Seng Holdings), and a consortium of angels.
The fund has already invested in six startups, namely Eat Just, TurtleTree Labs, Avant Meats, Rebellyous Foods, Cultured Decadence, and Novel Farms.
The VC firm will actively work with these companies in areas such as IP protection, organisation design, scaling-up, hiring, and fundraising strategies.
The fund’s strategic location is within Southeast Asia, which is experiencing a demand surge for protein alternatives due to growing health and environmental consciousness.
Good Startup recently secured its VC fund management license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
The VC firm believes that sustainable innovation must happen in the global food ecosystem. This is not just to feed the world’s estimated 10 billion population by 2050 and a simultaneous 70 per cent increase in protein demand, but to also use methods that are also less environmentally demanding.
The continued reliance on animals for food has raised human exposure to zoonotic diseases. The UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) found that most human diseases originate in animals and most antibiotics globally need to be administered to animals.
“For years, food ecosystem stakeholders had to balance the need to meet food security needs while also balancing the toll that animal food production takes on our world. Yet, the growing role of the biotechnology sector in producing alternative proteins can give us the same food we enjoy with less impact on our environment. This can only be achieved by supporting biotech food companies to scale globally, especially in markets that still depend heavily on meat,” Gautam Godhwani, Managing Partner of Good Startup, said.
“The future of the world’s food ecosystem rests on these next-generation companies. In order for them to meet their sustainable food production goals, they require investors and partners that can guide them throughout their journey,” said Jayesh Parekh, Managing Partner, Good Startup.
“Being a cross-border fund that invests in alternative protein companies globally, we are especially excited about the alternative protein ecosystem’s potential in rapidly emerging markets like Southeast Asia, where we currently have a rich pipeline of deals that we are actively working on and expect to make announcements soon,” Parekh added.
This is largely due to a shift in people’s values of food consumption towards a healthier lifestyle.
According to Pitchbook, a private market data firm, a significant chunk of the market share will be taken away from the US$350-billion annual meat market.
Food innovation and bio-engineered food have been predicted to continue growing annually by 10 per cent with the possibility of reaching US$104.6 billion by 2025,
Image Credit: Good Startup
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