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Alternative Proteins International Investments

Dao Foods Announces Second Cohort of Alternative Protein Ventures

Images from Albert Tseng and Tao Zhang’s LinkedIn

Dao Foods International welcomes its second Cohort of Chinese and China-focused alternative protein ventures under its Dao Foods Incubator initiative.

“In our Incubator’s first cohort, the majority of our companies were consumer-facing companies that have been directly introducing new alternative protein foods in the market,” said Albert Tseng, co-founder of Dao Foods International. “In this second cohort, we are excited to support more supply-oriented companies that are using science and technology to cultivate novel proteins that offer new functionality and scalability. We need both demand- and supply-side solutions, and we are seeing more and more innovators spanning this spectrum across different regions of China.”

Dao Foods Incubator’s second cohort hails from different parts of China including a cross-border cell-based company from the U.S., which intends to have China as part of its strategy. All these ventures have adopted a tech-driven approach, and the founding teams have a strong science background or solid technology partnership with relevant Chinese academic institutions.

Dao Foods Incubator’s second cohort includes:

  • Shanghai Protein: Founded by a team of scientists who have created a process for upcycling soybean pulp (okara) from food processing into sustainable protein powder for a series of healthy food products.
  • ShiShen Food Technology: With its traditional Chinese medicine background, ShiShen has been working with the Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Chinese Academy of Sciences to develop their plant-based food products.
  • Cultured Decadence: This cell-based lobster company is the first cross-border venture recruited by the Dao Foods Incubator.
  • Geb Impact Technology: With the backing of the Hong Kong government, Geb Impact cultivates and ferments microalgae for alternative protein applications.
  • Blue Canopy: Blue Canopy supplies food companies with affordable, nutritious, and tasty protein ingredients for alternative meat products through traditional mycelium fermentation or their proprietary precision-fermentation processes.

“The alternative protein sector is still quite nascent in China,” said Tao Zhang, co-founder of Dao Foods. “Though momentum has been building up in this sector over the past two years, the mainstream consumer knowledge and adoption of new protein products are far from there yet. The game changers will be those entrepreneurs who know how to conquer the stomachs and minds of China’s mainstream consumers. We hope that an army of such entrepreneurs can be nurtured and developed via the Dao Foods Incubator to achieve the positive environmental and climate impact we aim to achieve in and from China.”


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