Aleph Farms, purveyor of cultivated beef steaks, hasn’t stopped at just producing steak without the cow. Now the company is expanding its product line to include a platform for manufacturing cell-cultured collagen. Aleph’s highly differentiated, integrated strategy to develop a complete alternative to animals in intensive animal farming stems from its inclusive vision to supplement sustainable, but less productive, livestock agriculture practices.
“The cellular agriculture industry has made greater promises to replace a large part of intensive animal farming practices, which make up to 70% of the global meat production. Cultivated meat, however, is only part of that solution as meat represents just 30-35% of the cow that is slaughtered. The rest include many other valuable by-products. To achieve our vision, we need to provide alternatives to the other animal parts as well, including collagen-based products,” says Didier Toubia, co-founder and CEO of Aleph Farms. “Focusing on single categories of animal products does not account for the complexity of the animal agriculture ecosystem. The protein transition should rely on a systems-based approach to successfully contribute to a comprehensive, just and inclusive meat sector transition.”
Prototype of Aleph Farms’ cell-cultured collagen, coming to market in 2024. Photo courtesy Aleph Farms
Conventional collagen is produced by boiling and processing cow’s hides and bones, and is widely used in a range of industries—from nutraceuticals to cosmetics and beyond. Aleph Farms’ patented, cultivated collagen offers attributes of natural animal-based collagen.
Aleph Frontiers, a division of Aleph Farms’ research center, is focused on the development of new technologies and products for eventual commercialization. As the first product to emerge from the company’s newly revealed incubator, and following 18 months of research by an expert team, Aleph’s collagen is now moving to full product development stage and should launch in 2024.
“We are leveraging key components from our production method for steaks—including our bovine cell sources and animal component-free growth medium—to produce several nature-identical collagen types directly from cow cells, as well as the entire extracellular matrix (ECM) which comprises a variety of fiber-forming proteins and represents the complete matrix of skin, bones and joints,” says Dr. Neta Lavon, CTO and VP of R&D at Aleph Farms. “Collagen is the most abundant protein in the ECM and is well recognized for its benefits.”
This announcement follows the company’s expansion to its new cultured-beef steaks pilot production plant. Both platforms largely share similar inputs and equipment—and present operational and cost-reduction synergies.
More FE stories on cultured meats, proteins
“Cell-by date: The state of cultivated meat,” March 8, 2022
“What’s in a Name?” March 9, 2022
“Cultured meat that looks and handles like real meat,” February 14, 2022