Spanish food tech startup Cocuus has developed its own 3D printing technology to make hyper-realistic plant-based and cell-based meat alternatives.
To prove this, Cocuus has recently 3D printed prototypes of ribeye steak and salmon sashimi that look just like the real things.
The company was founded in 2017 by Javier Zaratiegui, Daniel Rico and Paxti Larumbe, who wanted to create solutions to our unsustainable food system and end traditional animal farming.
"The resources to feed the entire population are limited. We cannot address this challenge with today's solutions," Zaratiegui told FoodNavigator.
Cocuus aims to help plant-based and cell-based meat makers reconstruct traditional meat products and scale up their production.
The startup created its MimETHICA platform, designed for large-scale bio-printing of plant-based products to recreate animal protein, from steaks to fish fillets. Its technology analyses the structure of foods and is based on mathematical models to reconstruct them.
MimETHICA allows startups to create alternatives that look like actual slabs of meat. It combines inkjet printing with 'proprietary ingredients' with other 'disruptive disciplines' needed to develop hyper-realistic vegan meats.
Additionally, Cocuus is developing its own bio-printing technology that involves 'morphological shaping' meat and fish products through 3D printing and bio-inks. The technology is now at the pilot testing stage, with plans for commercialisation in 2022.
Finally, the startup is also using 3D printing to create scaffolding for the cell-based meat and fish sector with bio-inks.
Recently, Cocuus has launched a new investment round to raise €2m. The money will help the company expand marketing and sales and fund further research and development.