Avant's alternative seafood is grown from cells in bioreactors. The company is building a pilot plant in Singapore. Photo: Avant.

Cell-grown seafood developer raises $10.8m

Hong Kong-based Avant, which produces seafood alternatives grown from fish cells, has raised US $10.8 million in a Series A funding round.

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The fund-raise, which follows on from a $3.1m seed fund round at the end of 2020, will allow Avant to continue its work of scaling up its processes.

The company is working to open a pilot plant in Singapore next year with bioreactors that can produce up to 2,000 litres of so-called “cultivated” seafood, vegan website Green Queen reports.

Carrie Chan: Hopes to send products to customers by late 2023.

On market ‘by late 2023’

Cultivated fish fillets and fish maw are expected to be Avant’s first products to market once it receives regulatory approval. The company is also working on a marine peptide for use in skincare.

“We are very grateful for the huge support of new investors and the ongoing commitment from existing investors,” Carrie Chan, chief executive and co-founder of Avant, said in a statement.

“We look forward to scaling up production for commercialisation and sending our products to customers by late 2023.”

‘Protecting the oceans’

Avant says it’s working to replace seafood products to help protect the oceans.

It claims fishing practices are emptying the oceans at a rate of 1-2 trillion fish per year, with nearly 90% of the world’s marine fish stocks now fully exploited, over-exploited or depleted.

“Simultaneously, the consumption of fish is rising at a rapid rate. World food fish consumption in 2030 is projected to rise by 18% from 2018,” the company states.