Home » Upside Foods Acquires Cultivated Seafood Company, Cultured Decadence

Upside Foods Acquires Cultivated Seafood Company, Cultured Decadence

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Berkeley, California-based Upside Foods, formerly Memphis Meats, has acquired Cultured Decadence, a Madison, Wisconsin-based cultivated seafood company.

Cultured Decadence was founded in 2020 and has developed proprietary cell lines and cell feed for a variety of seafood products, including lobster and other crustaceans. This acquisition will enable Upside to complement and expand its product portfolio and accelerate commercialization of a range of seafood products grown directly from animal cells, without raising animals.

Cultured Decadence will adopt Upside’s brand and remain in Wisconsin as Upside’s Midwest hub.

This acquisition follows the recent opening in California of Upside’s Engineering, Production and Innovation Center, the most advanced cultivated meat, poultry and seafood production facility in the world. EPIC will be able to produce both Upside’s existing product and species portfolio as well as that of Cultured Decadence.

“Seafood has a rich and delicious culinary tradition that makes it a favorite across the globe. Cultivated seafood also has a tremendous potential to benefit the world,” said Uma Valeti, founder and CEO of Upside Foods. “Cultured Decadence’s technology is incredibly promising, and their team is filled with passionate, smart individuals who want to make our favorite food a force for good.

“We’re thrilled to welcome the Cultured Decadence team to the Upside family and are excited that the scientific, technological and production infrastructure we have built over many years can help accelerate the mission impact of this team,” Valeti said.

Cultivated meat, poultry and seafood is real meat produced directly by growing animal cells, without the need to raise and slaughter animals. It is not vegan, vegetarian or plant-based.

“We’ve long admired Upside’s innovation and leadership in the cultivated meat industry,” said John Pattison and Ian Johnson, co-founders of Cultured Decadence. “Upside’s unparalleled R&D and scale up capabilities will significantly accelerate the commercialization of cultivated delicious,  sustainable and humane seafood. Uma and his team’s ‘Big Tent’ mentality resonates deeply with our team, and we are incredibly proud and humbled to be joining such a talented group with a deep shared sense of mission, purpose and commitment to doing the right thing. There’s nobody else we’d rather join to build the future of food.”

In addition to the grand opening of EPIC, Upside recently announced a partnership with 3-Michelin Star Chef Dominique Crenn and an investment from Whole Foods’ CEO John Mackey. In April 2021, Cultured Decadence announced an oversubscribed pre-seed funding round and receipt of Wisconsin state grants.

Upside Foods is reimagining meat for the 21st century – new sources of meat, fish and poultry that also address environmental sustainability, animal welfare and public health concerns. By cultivating meat directly from animal cells, without the need to raise or slaughter animals, the company released the world’s first cultivated meatball in February 2016 and the world’s first cultivated poultry in March 2017.

Upside Foods has raised more than $200 million, including a $186 million series B round.

For more information, visit upsidefoods.com.

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