Corporate laboratory WIL@NUS—a $110-million plant-based research and development facility—opened in Singapore this month. The facility is a collaboration between agribusiness group Wilmar International Limited, the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Singapore’s National Research Foundation, who plan to use it to develop plant-based foods, such as chicken satay, that are relevant to the region. “From the elderly to the millennial, people are demanding healthier and more nutritious food,” Wilmar CEO Kuok Khoon Hong told media outlet Straits Times. “To stay ahead of the curve, we embrace open innovation.” The 2,000-square-foot facility located on the NUS campus will focus on the development of plant-based foods that are more cost-effective and sustainable than animal agriculture. “I am looking forward to food products from the Corporate Lab that could enhance the health and well-being of our people,” Hong said, “as well as greener and more sustainable production of biochemical compounds for our industry.” Stateside, Christine Lagally—the former senior scientist of food advocacy firm Good Food Institute—recently launched vegan company Seattle Food Tech where, in addition to plant-based meat, she plans to develop machinery and facilities that will help the entire vegan industry scale up the production of its cruelty-free products in coming years.
Photo courtesy of Seattle Food Tech