Shiok Meats’ Mini-Plant Inaugurated by Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment; the First-of-its-Kind Advanced R&D Facility for Cultivated Seafood in Singapore
Shiok Meats, Southeast Asia’s first cultivated seafood and meat company and the world’s first cultivated crustacean company, announced the official opening of their ‘Mini’-Plant located at their Singapore headquarters in Innovate 360. The mini-plant’s opening was officiated by the Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Ms Grace Fu on November 22, 2021.
The mini-plant is expected to help the R&D team in process optimization, technology transfer, and data-based development for sustainably cultivating seafood like shrimp, lobster, and crab.
Ms Grace Fu said, “I am glad to see Singaporean companies at the forefront of this global drive for food innovation. Shiok Meats is our homegrown company developing cultured seafood products and has raised about USD$30 million in investment funding since its inception three years ago. The opening of this mini R&D plant is a significant milestone for Shiok Meats as it expands its R&D efforts and validates its unique cellular agriculture technology for the production of cultured shrimp, crab and lobster…….I congratulate Shiok Meats for the inauguration of its Mini Plant. I look forward to Shiok Meats’ expansion of its R&D efforts at the new plant and your cultured shrimp, crab, and lobster in the market.”
The company partnered with global leader in innovative, sustainable infrastructure solutions Black & Veatch for the conceptual design and layout of the plant, based on industry best practices, compliance principles, and viable future manufacturing models.
David Ziskind, Director of Engineering at Black & Veatch NextGen Ag said, “Reshaping our food system will require massive change. We are proud of Shiok Meats on this important milestone in transforming the future of food. Innovation and sustainability are core to our engineering and construction solutions as we help companies bridge the gap between science, research and development, engineering, and commercialization to bring new food products to market, at scale. We’re excited to collaborate with Shiok Meats in support of their scale-up efforts to create better and more sustainable food by leveraging biotechnology to enhance global food security.”
For the end-to-end construction of the fully-functional mini-plant, Shiok Meats worked with FoodNet International Holdings Pte Ltd, a local one-stop solution provider for the Food Industry.
“We have built a state-of-the-art facility which will be a stepping stone towards our pilot manufacturing plant in Singapore, serving as a great model for technology transfer between R&D scale and production scale. Our processes, sustainable and traceable, are designed to help gauge the impact of the cultivated seafood technology. It’s one of the greatest scientific advancements of our time, steadily taken to the next level. I am very proud of what we have achieved as a team, especially in the middle of a constantly evolving pandemic and global supply chain disruptions,” shared Durgalakshmi Sathiakumar, Chief Operating Officer at Shiok Meats.
By showcasing three cultivated seafood prototypes – shrimp, lobster, and crab in three consecutive years since being founded in 2018, Shiok Meats has continued to be ahead of the curve. The products are slated to hit the market in 2023.
Dr. Sandhya Sriram, Group CEO & Co-founder, Shiok Meats, added, “It is a big milestone for us as we work towards complementing Singapore’s ‘30 by 30’ food security strategy. Our production facility, which is due in the next 18 months, will be an extension of this mini-plant in terms of engineering design and foundation, which is why it was crucial to get this right. The cultivated seafood industry is novel and hence we need to scale up production in steps, gradually and strategically. As we prepare for commercialization in 2023, we want to ensure a comprehensive manufacturing model and top-notch products. This would not have been possible without the unwavering support of our partners, Black & Veatch and FoodNet, our investors, and our rockstar and resilient team.”
The start-up has over 30 employees based in Singapore and is currently hiring for R&D and business roles.
Besides the mini-plant, Shiok Meats recently announced the addition of strategic investors like Woowa Brothers, CJ CheilJedang Corporation, Vietnam’s top seafood exporter Vinh Hoan Corporation, Cultured Seafood Investors LLC, and Yi Sung Yong (CEO of Grain) bringing the total funding to approximately US$30 Million to date.