Hailing from Ljubljana, the foodtech start-up has joined the 2021 cohort of seed funding and accelerator programme Y Combinator
Juicy Marbles plant-based tenderloin

With no printing, GMOs or laboratory alterations, Juicy Marbles co-founders Tilen Travnik, Luka Sincek and Maj Hrovat have created the first line of raw, plant-based steaks, starting with the most premium cut of them all – filet mignon.

The entrepreneurial trio combined their food technology, microbiology, and biotechnology backgrounds and founded Juicy Marbles in 2020. The start-up’s promising technology has just been selected to join the cohort 2021 of Y Combinator, the US-based seed funding and accelerator programme.

Juicy Marbles uses proprietary equipment to create plant-based meat. The technology allows the company to mimic the muscle texture and marbling of meat by aligning and layering fibres from the bottom up with all-natural ingredients. Its patent-pending machine is called the Meat-o-matic Reverse Grinder 9000.

“The biggest challenge was getting the right fibre alignment and intramuscular fat structure – the marbling,” said co-founder Sincek.

Sincek explained the most expensive steaks in the world are known for their lush marbling, and that it takes a lot of energy and a rare breed of cow to attain that. “With plant meat, we control it and, over time, can scale up our steak production and bring down the price.  Eventually, we’ll be able to make the most premium meats attainable for everyone,” he added.

Co-founderTravnik said: “We can’t expect a necessary global diet shift towards plant-based without a wide variety of plant meats that will not only enable the continuation of culinary traditions but also enable a well-balanced and wholesome diet.”

Unlike most other plant-based food companies, Juicy Marbles makes raw and unseasoned meats that are ready to cook.

Vladimir Mickovic, chief brand officer, added: “The allure of meat is not just texture or flavour, it’s also simplicity of preparation. A sprinkle of salt, sizzle on the pan, and boom – you have a tasty protein on your plate.”

The world’s first plant-based steaks are now available online through the steak-testing programme on the Juicy Marbles website. The steaks ship direct-to-consumer to the 48 states in the US, and throughout Europe for a limited time.

Date published: 10 March 2021

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