SACRAMENTO: CULT Food Science Corp. has again diversified its cell-based food portfolio via a strategic investment into the leading cultured chocolate manufacturer, California Cultured Inc.
CULT Food is an innovative investment platform with an exclusive focus on clean, lab-grown food that is advancing the development of novel technologies to provide a sustainable, environmental, and ethical solution to the global factory farming and aquaculture crises.
California Cultured uses cell culture technology to produce cocoa products like cocoa powder, chocolate, and cocoa butter with the goal of creating sustainable and ethical chocolate for consumption around the world.
Alongside other prominent capital allocators to the cellular agriculture industry such as London Stock Exchange-listed Agronomics Limited, CULT is pleased to support California Cultured’s noble mission and is optimistic about the future of cell-based food production in chocolate and other major food categories.
California Cultured is focused on manufacturing cocoa by cultivating select optimum cocoa cells in tanks. Ingredients are to be sourced in the United States, which will ensure that its products adhere to high ethical and sustainability standards. Ultimately, if successful the overall process of cocoa production will be done without deforestation and child labour.
California Cultured is motivated to find a solution to the major issues of concern at the root of chocolate production, while providing chocolate-loving consumers with premium cocoa products.
Two major concerns surround the production of chocolate – child labour on cocoa farms and deforestation. The chocolate industry is currently worth over USD 100 billion and relies on cocoa farmers to continue producing cocoa at a rapid pace.
On average, cocoa farmers earn below-poverty wages, which motivates them to seek the employment of children who receive little or no compensation.
Some children are taken from their families at a young age, forced into harvesting cocoa, and do not return home for years.
Over the last ten years, the occurrence of child labour has continued to become more prevalent in countries like Ghana and the Ivory Coast.
Regarding the second concern, the production of cocoa often relies on monoculture growth, which leads to complete deforestation on cocoa farms resulting in loss of primate populations in many West African countries where most of the cocoa farming is done.
Lejjy Gafour, President of CULT, said such a revolutionary venture was aiming to be a leading catalyst in changing the global food industry for the better. “California Cultured’s innovative, responsible and disruptive pursuit aligns well with our Company’s ethos. We believe cell-cultured cocoa is the next step in the sustainable, safe, and ethical food production of a major global food category.”