BOULDER, COLO. — Meati Foods opened a “mega ranch” facility to accelerate production of its mushroom-based whole-cut meat alternatives.
The facility is expected to cultivate mycelium for use in chicken-style cutlets and steak-style fillets at an annual rate of tens of millions of pounds by late 2023, making it a producer of animal-free protein at a scale that matches and even exceeds many of the country’s largest individual animal-based ranches, according to the company.
Located in Thornton, Colo., the “mega ranch” partially was funded by Meati’s oversubscribed Series C round, which brought its total funding to more than $250 million. The funding, coupled with the launch of the production facility, will position Meati as a leader in the emerging mycelium-based meat market with $1 billion in run-rate sales expected by 2025, said Tyler Huggins, co-founder and chief executive officer of the Boulder, Colo.-based startup.
“Investors and consumers recognize that Meati is a new, differentiated food,” Huggins said. “They only need to read our simple ingredient list and taste Meati to recognize that this is the cut-through option people have been waiting for — something they absolutely see weekly if not daily on their plates.”
The facility was designed to scale Meati to an omnichannel, national footprint by the end of this year. It features a vertically integrated approach, with the growing, harvesting, processing and packaging of Meati products taking place under the same roof.
The company launched its first national consumer offering, a line of classic and crispy cutlets, last March. The products were named one of the best inventions of 2022 by Time magazine. Meati’s lineup, which also includes a pair of steak alternatives, is available direct-to-consumer online and through a growing roster of retail and foodservice partners, including Sprouts Farmers Market and Sweetgreen.
“The next few years will see a seismic shift in how we eat, and Meati’s state-of-the-art, scalable production capabilities coupled with its focus on meeting consumer needs for clean, whole-food protein position the brand to lead,” said Fazeela Abdul Rashid, partner at Revolution Growth Partners, which led the startup’s Series C round, and a member of the Meati board. “Tyler and the team have a vision for a new food category with pure ingredients and taste that doesn’t compromise.”