Slashing CO2

Founded: 2020

HQ: Boston, MA

Looks like meat, tastes like meat.

Big Picture

Combined, pork and chicken make up more than 60% of global meat production and emit more than 1 Gt of CO2e annually. Multiple plant- and cell-based alternatives exist, but they struggle to expand beyond meat mush into whole cuts. Until alternative meats can replicate the structure and feel of grandma’s pulled pork, they’ll never expand beyond the packaged and processed meat aisle.

How it Works

Tender is developing a fiber spinning technology that spins scaffolds finer than human hair out of common plant-based ingredients like soy and cellulose. These structures enable cells to “differentiate” into tissues, fiber, and muscle and ultimately replicate the structure of a whole cut. They’re starting out with a plant-based pulled pork and chicken and will expand into other meats from there.

Unfair Advantage

Other texturing technologies like 3D printing are either low-throughput or struggle with fibrous textures. Tender can spin kilograms of fiber per hour at the lab scale, and they make a product that would pull its weight at a state fair. They can also work with a variety of ingredients, enabling them to eventually touch a range of muscle cuts across both meat and seafood.

50

Plus compatible

alternative meat ingredients

CHRISTOPHE CHANTRE CEO & CO-FOUNDER

Christophe was previously a postdoc at the Harvard Wyss Institute where he researched bioprosthetics. He holds a PhD in Integrative Human Physiology with a focus on biomaterials from the University of Zurich.

GRANT GONZALEZ CTO & CO-FOUNDER

Grant completed a postdoc and PhD in Materials Engineering from Harvard University. He also holds a BS in Chemistry and Physics Joint with Engineering Sciences from Harvard University.

LUKE MACQUEEN CSO & CO-FOUNDER

Grant completed a postdoc and PhD in Materials Engineering from Harvard University. He also holds a BS in Chemistry and Physics Joint with Engineering Sciences from Harvard University.


Muscle tissue engineering in fibrous gelatin: implicatons for meat analogs

Nature

Lab-Grown Meat That Doesn’t Look Like Mush

The New York Times

Scientists Are Literally Spinning Up Lab-Grown Meat

WIRED