On 25 February, Next Gen Foods had successfully closed a US$10 million seed round, led by investors such as Temasek Holdings, K3 Ventures, the New Ventures arm of the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), NX Foods, FEBE Ventures and Blue Horizon amongst others.
The funding from this round will be used for the global launch of Next Gen’ plant-based chicken consumer brand TiNDLE starting with Singapore and its expansion into additional Asian cities, and continued research and development of new plant-based products.
Co-Founder of Next Gen Foods, Andre Menezes joined Timo Recker to set up Next Gen Foods in Singapore. Menezes was the General Manager of Country Foods Singapore, Singapore’s largest meat importer, distributor and processor that is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SATS, better known for providing ground handling services at Changi Airport. At Country Foods, Menezes helped make Impossible Foods a household name in Singapore.
Next Gen’s soy-protein based Chicken Meat offers one closest to the real meat without all the harmful effects like cholesterol, added hormones and other meat-related diseases. All the investors are betting on a global success of TiNDLE as UBS projected that the plant protein segment will grow to reach a massive US$85 billion industry by 2030.
TiNDLE Thy, the startup’s first plant-based product which is an alternative to chicken thigh, is due to hit restaurants in Europe and Singapore in the coming weeks. If the public acceptance is good, TiNDLE will be exported to other countries outside the Europe-Asia circuit and reach US and Brazil in retail in the next year or two.
Singapore is an attractive investment location for plant-based protein ventures as it is the first country in the world to approve the commercial sale of lab-grown meat, while the country’s regulatory body is also keen to improve the country’s food security with a program to help enterprises develop capabilities in sustainability.