The Israel Innovation Authority approved on Wednesday the establishment of four new consortiums in the fields of cultivated meat, insect farming, human-robot interface, and fluid sampling focused medical diagnosis, with estimated operating budgets to total around NIS 220 million over three years.
The move represents one of the largest public-sector investments in cultivated meat in the world, bringing together leaders from the industry and academia, following a $10 million grant provided by the US Department of Agriculture to Tufts University.
The funding is being provided through the Israel Innovation Authority’s Generic Technology Research Consortium program, operated by the Authority’s Technology Infrastructure Division.
The program offers grants for research and development cooperation within the framework of a consortium (an association of industrial companies and research institutions for the joint development of technologies), with the aim of promoting and supporting technological collaborations for the development of infrastructure and pre-products, that are at the leading edge of global technology – with a significant economic impact on Israeli companies and on the economy as a whole. Each consortium will eventually include about 10 companies and 10 academic research groups.
“The four new consortiums we have approved speak to the Innovation Authority’s strategy of supporting ground-breaking technological areas with the potential for a significant economic impact, with a substantial need for government involvement,” said Dror Bin, CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority.
“Such government involvement is especially required in areas where cooperation would not otherwise take place without the active support of the Israel Innovation Authority.”
“All of the approved consortiums incorporate high-level multidisciplinary aspects that generally lead to significant technological breakthroughs,” Bin added. “Two of the consortiums – cultivated meat and medical diagnosis – are, inter alia, the result of extensive activities by the Authority over the past two years to promote projects in the field of bio-convergence, which we believe, are likely to have a significant impact on the Israeli economy. ” Bio-convergence refers to technologies applied in the field of biology in conjunction with engineering fields or methods, such as electronics, AI, computational biology, physics, nanotechnology, materials science and advanced genetic engineering.