Aquaculture for all

Funding success for seaweed-based bacon startup

Climate change Sustainability Economics +6 more

Pioneering the production of seaweed-based bacon alternatives, Berkeley-based Umaro Foods reports a successful second funding round, and is looking to move its products into retail markets.

Umaro Foods uses red seaweed protein to replicate the crispy, umami qualities of traditional bacon

© Umaro Foods

Umaro Foods, an alternative protein company based in Berkeley, California, has announced a successful second funding round, raising a reported $3.8 million following significant sales growth.

With this increase in financial backing, the startup, which uses protein sourced from red seaweeds to produce a plant-based alternative to pork bacon, is positioning to move its products - currently only available in wholesale and in select restaurants - into retail markets.

“Our innovative, seaweed-based formula for bacon is what differentiates our product from other brands, and is now patented in the US. After achieving incredible traction in restaurants across the country, with sales growing sixfold in one year, we’re looking forward to reaching new customers,” said Umaro Foods chief executive officer Beth Zotter, in a report from Vegconomist - a vegan news platform.

Following their successful funding round - which was led by venture capital firm Agfunder - the Umaro Foods team is aiming to diversify its product range, along with expanding their technology platform for processing seaweed.

Amongst the most iconic of the new products set to be launched by Umaro Foods this year is their plant-based bacon, egg, and cheese breakfast sandwich, which takes inspiration from the New York breakfast staple, but adds an innovative seaweed twist to the bodega classic.

The next growth phase for Umaro Foods is based upon the consolidation of their technology platform, which reportedly produces the seaweed-based bacon at half the cost of the traditional pork-based product.

“This funding not only fuels our growth but also accelerates our mission to create sustainable, delicious alternatives that benefit both people and the planet. We’re excited to embark on this next chapter,” said Zotter.

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