Oshi has developed a salmon analogue based on legume proteins and algae, but will now work to produce a fillet made from mycoprotein, an ingredient that can be grown in a fermenter in just a few hours.

Israeli and US firms team up to produce mycoprotein ‘salmon’ fillet


Israeli start-up Oshi, which makes a 3D-printed salmon analogue using legume proteins and algae extract, and a US company that makes a meat analogue from mycoprotein, have jointly been awarded US $1 million to develop mycoprotein-based salmon fillets.

The money comes from Israel-US Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD), which promotes R&D that mutually benefits both Israel and the US.

Rehovot-based Oshi, formerly known as Plantish, will work with The Better Meat Company to deliver high-protein, minimally processed whole cuts that will deliver the same taste and nutrition found in conventional fish, the companies state.

Oshi has raised $14.5m in funding and plans to launch its first products in US restaurants later this year.

Mycelium fermentation

The Better Meat Co., based in Sacramento, California, is harnessing mycelium fermentation to create business-to-business ingredients. In 2022, the company received a fourth patent for its proprietary fermentation tech.

The company produces what is calls Rhiza mycoprotein, which it claims is superior in terms of nutrition, meat-like texture, and efficiency to textured plant protein isolates commonly used to make plant-based meat.

“Straight out of the fermenter Rhiza already has a meat-like texture,” the company says on its website. “It’s a whole, all-natural, unprocessed food with a complete amino acid profile, not an extruded protein isolate or fractionate. It’s packed with the protein you want, and but also the fibre you need.”

Filamentous structure

Rhiza is made from mycelium, the root system of fungi which can have a unique filamentous structure that mimics the texture of animal meat.

“We take common ingredients like potatoes, rice, and corn and subject them to an age-old fermentation technique. Within hours, the result is an all-natural, high-protein, whole food with the natural texture of animal meat,” states The Better Meat Co.

Although Rhiza is a mycoprotein, it is not a mushroom protein.

“Think of mushrooms as the fruit of fungi, but not the whole thing. In fact, most fungi don't even produce mushrooms,” explains the company. “We feed starchy foods to microscopic fungi and allow them to naturally turn into the meatiest animal-free protein on the planet.”