Bay Area food tech promises cow-free pizza by 2023

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In San Francisco, precision fermentation startup New Culture is targeting late 2023 for the launch of its animal-free mozzarella cheese. The company plans to partner with pizzerias to provide first access to the technology, which involves using fermentation to produce casein, the main protein in milk. 

Co-founder Matt Gibson tells FoodNavigator that New Culture’s cow-free mozzarella tastes and stretches like the real thing.  “Casein proteins are very difficult to make using precision fermentation, but we have made numerous breakthroughs over the last 18 months to produce substantial amounts of animal-free casein protein,” he adds.  “This ability to make significant quantities of casein protein has enabled us to be the only company 100% focused on mozzarella, as mozzarella is so reliant on casein.” 

Gibson adds that they are launching in restaurants first. “We will be going into food-service first where the majority of mozzarella is consumed,” said Gibson. “We will have a consumer-facing brand – think Impossible Foods – with co-branding on the products that are sold with New Culture cheese.” 

The company is currently raising funds to boost capacity.