China: Plant-based start-up scores cultivated meat partnership for hybrid product development

Herotein enters China with vegan ready-meals as it plots hybrid offering with cell-based animal fats specialist Mission Barns
Herotein launched its fist product suite in China in February

Shanghai-headquartered foodtech company Herotein has established a strategic partnership with cell-cultivated animal fats producer Mission Barns to develop a line of plant-based and cell-based hybrid products in China.

The collaboration will be the first-of-its-kind for a Chinese foodtech business and will combine Herotein’s plant-based protein with Mission Barns’ cultivated animal fats to create a new blended offering.

Herotein launched in China in February, providing consumers with a line of alt-protein chicken and beef products via both retail and foodservice channels.

It claims to be the first domestic company in China that is producing plant-based products using high moisture extrusion methods.

Beyond Meat recently lamented its supply and distribution challenges in Asia, brought about high costs in production and shipping from Europe to Asia.

Herotein has also rolled out a line of ready-meals in China that have been co-created with specialty foods brand Butler & White’s.

Vicky Lee, CEO of Herotein, said: “We will continue to leverage Herotein’s unique product innovation capabilities to be a technology and culinary leader in bringing new plant-based meat and meal experiences to Chinese consumers.”

Lee joined the business in April, bringing vast food industry experience to the start-up. She previously spent 15 years as CMO and VP for marketing, branding and communications at McDonald’s in Taiwan.

Most recently Lee spent a year and a half at DAChan Food’s Better Me Precision Nutrition Food Company, where she oversaw all of the healthy food company’s operations.