CHICAGO, Ill. – June 29, 2022 – Food tech startup Aqua Cultured Foods announced today it has conducted multiple private tastings of its seafood alternatives with commercialization and go-to-market partners including national foodservice distributors, multinational organizations, global chefs and other leaders in foodservice and retail channels. Aqua has recently showcased its whole-muscle cut tuna, whitefish, and calamari alternatives from microbial fermentation for current and prospective partners representing Europe, Asia, and North America.
Aqua anticipates public tasting events to gauge consumer acceptance of its mycoprotein-based seafood this year with select restaurant partners and with in-market product introductions via strategic partners in 2023.
“The plant-based whole muscle cut, sushi-grade alternative seafood samples I tried today were absolutely incredible. INCREDIBLE!!,” said Jen DiFrancesco, Director of Culinary Innovation at Sodexo. “Wonderful time today with these fine, talented folks at Aqua Cultured Foods. Made from fungi and I was completely blown away, I couldn’t stop eating it. We’re still talking about it!”
“The feedback and discussions with companies we’re meeting have made us extremely optimistic about go-to-market and co-branding opportunities,” said Aqua CGO Brittany Chibe. “Whether it’s rising costs, supply chain concerns, or sustainability goals, we are seeing major interest from potential partners that want to develop products with our seafood or offer it on menus.”
As Aqua scales production of its mycoprotein-based seafood, it is actively seeking a Chicago-area site to build its production plant. With a fully operational facility of 15,000 square feet, Aqua expects to initially deliver 50,000 pounds per month. Additional plants can be built in other world regions to help satisfy the rising demand for seafood. The company is currently raising its next financing round.
Aqua is developing calamari, shrimp, scallops, and filets of animal-free tuna and whitefish, all with a realistic taste and texture. Aqua’s fermentation methods do not use any animal inputs, genetic altering or modification and can be marketed as non-GMO. Unlike plant-based processed foods formulated with starches and protein isolates, products made from microbial fermentation like Aqua’s alt-seafood retain naturally occurring fiber, protein, and other micronutrients.
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About Aqua Cultured FoodsAqua Cultured Foods is an innovative food technology startup developing the world’s first whole-muscle cut seafood alternatives created through microbial fermentation. Its novel technology produces a sustainable, complete protein source using only a fraction of the resources required by traditional aquaculture. As an R&D company with a focus on product commercialization, Aqua Cultured Foods occupies a unique position in the burgeoning alt-seafood market as well as within the fermentation industry. The company’s mission is to mitigate global challenges such as overfishing, climate change and feeding the world’s expanding population with delicious, nutrient-rich foods. Investors include Supply Change Capital, Aera VC, HPA, Sustainable Food Ventures, Hanfield Venture Partners, Lifely VC, Conscience VC, Kingfisher Capital, Big Idea Ventures, and Gonzalo Ramirez Martiarena. For more information visit https://www.aquaculturedfoods.com.