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Venture capital funds cool on plant-based meat start-ups

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By illuminem briefings 🌎

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece here in the Financial Times or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: In Q1-23, start-ups focused on plant-based meat received $75.2 million in funding from venture capital firms, down from $703 million in Q1-22
• Beyond Meat and Nestlé, two major players in the space, respectively raised $200mn to avoid liquidity issues and withdrew lines from UK supermarket shelves

🔭 The context: VC funding for plant-based meat start-ups has reached its lowest level since 2018, as a weaker economic outlook and rising interest rates dampen enthusiasm for the once-booming industry 
• The slowdown comes on top of a steep drop last year, when backing from venture capital funds tumbled to $1.5bn, half the total in 2021

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: The sector plays a crucial role in addressing sustainability and environmental concerns associated with traditional meat production
• The slowdown in venture capital funding for plant-based meat highlights the vulnerability of the industry to economic factors

⏭️ What’s next: Despite the funding decline, venture capital firms have not entirely abandoned the sector
• While support for plant-based alternatives has decreased, companies developing lab grown and cultivated meats secured $356.6mn across 30 deals in the first quarter 

💬 One quote: "This fast-moving sector is just getting started and will need to continue weathering the difficult market environment." (Carlotte Lucas, Senior Corporate Engagement Manager at Good Food Institute Europe)

📈 One stat: According to data provider PitchBook, venture capital funding for plant-based meat start-ups dropped over 89% compared to the previous year

Click for more news covering the latest on Sustainable Finance

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