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Could ‘Molecular Farming’ Become a Plant-Based Game-Changer?


An alternative meat that actually tastes good? For many, that sounds far-fetched. However, Moolec Science is motivated to make that a reality, by producing a unique protein option.

Slowly, but somewhat steadily, a number of people opt to limit or eliminate traditional meat from their diet. Many of those consumers feel eating traditional meat is inhumane, for example.

The main problem for this group of consumers, however, is that most meat alternatives don’t really compare to the taste of the real thing. Billions of dollars have been spent trying to create a plant-based meat alternative that will satisfy consumers.

Moolec feels it has found the answer.

Moolec aims to create a tastier alt-meat option by infusing crops with animal genes, according to a recent report by Bloomberg. Moolec will create a more realistic meat texture by enhancing its soy and peas with pork and beef genes, creating an animal-plant hybrid protein. This process – using bioengineered plants to produce animal proteins – is called molecular farming.

Gaston Paladini, Moolec’s CEO, is heir to an Argentine meat company, Paladini SA, so he’s no stranger to the world of meat and the quest for a tasty and healthy plant-based alternative. He’s also familiar with the hurdles that other companies have run into when trying to create alt-protein, such as exorbitant expenses.

So, rather than competing with companies like Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, Paladini’s looking to work alongside them. The CEO would like to become a provider to such alt-meat companies, which would help cut down on the cost of bringing the product to market and help cut back on resource-intensive processing. Moolec sees a total addressable market of $65 billion, according to a report by FoodDive.

“I don’t see them as competitors,” Paladini told Bloomberg. “I see them as the market.”

Moolec began trading shares on Nasdaq on January 3. 

“We’re very proud of our team for listing Moolec in one of the most prestigious tech exchanges without neglecting our science and operations,” Paladini said in a press release. “Moolec will become the first molecular farming food-tech company trading in public markets, which further highlights our category creator status.

“This is a step closer towards building a more resilient and sustainable food system, using science in food to set up a better future,” Paladini added. 

According to Bloomberg, the launch for the animal-infused soy and peas will happen sometime in 2027 or 2028.