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Formerly known as Boston Meats, the food technology startup Tender Food has announced a $12 million seed round to scale production of its alternative, plant-based and sustainable meat products. Tender was founded by engineers from Harvard University, aiming to commercialise technologies that can ‘spin’ plant proteins in ways that replicate the textures of muscle fibres. The round is led by the Shark Tank star Chris Sacca’s Lowercarbon Capital, joined by other venture investors as well as the actor and activist Natalie Portman.

Tender says it plans to use the funding to scale production for the first market launches later this year. The lead investor, Lowercarbon Capital says it “backs kickass companies that make real money slashing CO2 emissions, sucking carbon out of the sky, and buying us time to unf**k [sic] the planet.” Investors participating alongside Sacca and Portman included Rhapsody Venture Partners, Safar Partners, Bread and Butter Ventures, MCJ Collective and the foodtech VC Unovis.

More on Tender Food after the jump.

Sacca, Portman, and Robert Downey Jr

Image credit: Green Queen (inspiration), Microsoft Paint Windows 98 (mad skills)

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