Consumers were skeptical when Redefine Meat set out to produce animal-free meat with a three-dimensional printer, but the product’s first taste test was a success.
The Israeli startup announced its plans for a more efficient, sustainable and ethical way to produce meat about three years ago. Now, the company is poised to have the first “alt-meat” of its kind on the market after holding what it called the largest-scale, public blind-tasting of plant-based meat.
Redefine Meat and Israeli meat distributor Best Meister parked a food truck in Kidron, a small suburb of Tel Aviv, for two days earlier this month. The menu included staple Mediterranean meat dishes, such as cooked-to-order kebab, cigars and kubbeh.
Driven by word of mouth, more than 600 visitors swamped the truck with close to 1,000 orders the first day. Supplies sold out in less than five hours, and all revenue was donated to local restaurants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
When customers were told the “meat” they were eating was plant-based, over 90 percent of them said Redefine Meat was comparable to animal meat in terms of taste and texture.
As a result, Best Meister formed a strategic partnership with Redefine Meat and will distribute the products commercially to Israeli restaurants and high-end butchers in the next few months. The move will make Redefine Meat’s product the first 3D-printed, vegan “meat” on the market, and the company intends to take it global.
“We believe alt-meat should taste as good as animal meat — simple as that,” Eshchar Ben-Shitrit, CEO and cofounder of Redefine Meat, which has raised a total of $6 million in investments, said in a press release.
“The incredible results of the food truck exemplify this. We initially only expected 100 visitors a day, as the event was held in a small village due to COVID-19 restrictions. But through word of mouth, we ended up receiving over 600 customers in one day — with queues as long as 50 minutes,” he said. “What this has shown is that meat lovers can enjoy our alternative meat because it tastes and feels like meat — not solely because it is better for the environment or animals.”
“We’ve been excited by Redefine Meat’s unique alternative meat offering for a while, but the food truck event cemented it for us,” Ori Zaguri, Best Meister CEO, said. “Not only was consumer feedback overwhelmingly positive, but Redefine Meat’s technology will also provide us the scale to create a wide-variety of quality meat cuts for our customers on-demand from one single source. We believe the mass meat-eater market is ready for alternative meat of this quality.”
Redefine Meat is made from sustainable plant-based proteins, fats and natural colors and flavors. The cholesterol-free product has less saturated fat and much more fiber than beef.
In other alt-protein news, Future Meat Technologies of Jerusalem has raised $26.75 million toward launching its cultivated chicken breast meat.
Hard to Swallow: Food Truck Patrons Get First Taste Of 3D-Printed Meat appeared first on ISRAEL21c.
(Edited by Carlin Becker and David Martosko)
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