SEOUL -- CJ Cheil Jedang, a key subsidiary of South Korea's food and entertainment conglomerate CJ Group, revealed a business strategy to actively push for the production of alternative meat after it secured a stable supply source of cell culture media, a key raw material for cultured meat which is produced by in vitro cell culture of animal cells.
"We will not only push to strengthen profitability through innovation in cost prices and cost structure but also begin our alternative protein business in earnest," CEO Choi Eun-seok told a regular shareholders' meeting on March 29
CJ Cheil Jedang has joined a race among domestic companies to seek the mass production of plant-based or cultured meat. In February 2022, CJ Cheil Jedang forged strategic ties with KCell Biosiences (Kcell), a major cell culture media producer. Kcell is a joint venture between WSG, a bio-process material company in South Korea, and Thousand Oaks Pharmaceuticals, a U.S.-based contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO).
The production of cultured meat used to be expensive, but costs have been lowered through technological advancements. South Korea has been heavily dependent on imported cell culture media. The partnership with Kcell would help CJ Cheil Jedang secure a competitive raw material for alternative meat production. Kcell will build a plant in the southern port city of Busan to produce serum-free and chemically defined cell culture media.
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