$114 Billion Meat Giant Cargill Partners With Cubiq Foods To Scale Plant-Based Fat
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Cargill, the world’s third largest meat producer, has recently announced its extending its partnership with food tech startup Cubiq Foods to co-develop and commercialize plant-based fat technologies.
The agreement aims to accelerate the commercialization of Cubiq’s novel fats, including its Go!Drop emulsion — a fat designed to bring a more realistic taste and texture to plant-based meat and dairy products.
Cargill invested in Cubiq last spring when it joined a $5.75 million funding round led by Moira Capital Partners, SGEIC and Newtree Impact. Cargill, which saw revenue of more than $114 billion last year, participated in the round and announced its plans to extend its partnership with the Barcelona-based fat producer.
Go!Drop is made from an emulsion of vegetable oils and water and Cubiq says it can be widely used across food product development. The partnership also gives Cargill access to Cubiq’s existing plant-based portfolio of ingredients that include plant proteins and texturizers, along with traditional fats and oils.
“By embracing new technologies, harnessing our full ingredient toolbox, and leveraging our global application knowledge, we’re poised to accelerate the development of the next-generation plant-based products,” Vivek Cherian, Meat and Dairy Alternatives Category Leader for Edible Oils at Cargill, said in a statement.
“Signing the joint development and commercial agreements represents the next phase in our partnership, as our groundbreaking technology is now ready for application development, production scale-up and widespread commercialization – roles that Cargill is uniquely equipped to help us advance,” said Andrés Montefeltro, Cheif Executive Officer at Cubiq Foods. “Together, we’ll help food manufacturers and consumers reimagine what’s possible in the quest for healthy and satisfying foods.”
Closing the ‘flavor gap’
The partnership represents a joint effort to close the “flavor gap” in plant-based foods by replicating the visual appearance, mouthfeel, and bite of conventional animal fat.
Cargill says most current plant-based options do not meet consumers’ expectations for taste and quality. It says Cubiq’s line of “smarter” fats can help to enhance the flavor profile of plant-based products, while also offering many advantages over traditional animal fats and tropical oils used in food production.
The partnership builds on the increasing commercialization of plant-based food technologies. According to a report by Meticulous Research, the global plant-based food market is expected to reach $74.2 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 11.9 percent from 2020 to 2027.
This growth is driven by several factors, including increasing consumer demand for plant-based products, concerns over the environmental impact of meat production, and advancements in food technology.