Thanks to New Wave Foods, you won't have to give up your favorite shrimp entrees when ordering in or dining out: Plant-based shrimp company New Wave Foods is planning on entering the restaurant and foodservice scene after raising $18 million in a Series A funding round.

New Wave Foods has been able to nail the taste and texture of the real seafood by using sustainable seaweed and plant-protein. The successful round of fundraising will allow the company to accelerate the production of plant-based shrimp as well as other shellfish including lobster, scallops, and crab.

The latest fundraising round was led by Venture Capital Firm New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Evolution VC Partners, and two firms will be investing in a company that was backed by Tyson in 2019.

“Plant-based protein is one of the most important consumer trends in decades, with the explosive demand for healthy, sustainable products, and New Wave Foods is delivering a plant-based seafood alternative that is delicious, responsible, and humane,” said Liza Landsman, General Partner at NEA. “It’s an uncompromising, category-defining approach to a fast-growing market, and we are thrilled to partner with the New Wave Foods team on what promises to be a remarkable journey.”

New Wave Foods called on experienced chefs as well as research and development experts to create a plant-based alternative that mimicked ocean shrimp. In the US, people eat 1.5 billion pounds of shrimp annually, making it the most consumed seafood in the country. New Wave Foods is hoping to take the $9 billion shrimp market by storm with this healthier, more environmentally-friendly alternative.

“Our focus is on offering customers a new, innovative, plant-based shellfish, beginning with the introduction of our plant-based shrimp. Along with a delicious tasting product, we aim to address the environmental issues that come with shrimp farming and overfishing,” said Mary McGovern, CEO, New Wave Foods. “We look forward to an exciting next chapter of growth for the Company and are honored to have an outstanding group of investors who share and support our vision.”

For many, seafood is the one food that stands in the way of eating a more plant-based diet. Companies such as New Wave Foods will transform the way people eat by creating more plant-based alternatives that will be readily available in restaurants.

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