Home INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS New Initiation in Cultivated Coffee; Interview with Yaky Yanay, CEO and President of Pluri

New Initiation in Cultivated Coffee; Interview with Yaky Yanay, CEO and President of Pluri

New Initiation in Cultivated Coffee; Interview with Yaky Yanay, CEO and President of Pluri


Yaky Yanay, CEO and President of Pluri talks about the company’s initiative in cultivated coffee. In this interview with TechBullion, we will discuss this innovative coffee opportunity, including the sustainable and environmental impact the company is making.

What is Pluri and what inspired this sustainable innovation in cultivated coffee?

Pluri is a leading biotechnology company with a unique 3D cell expansion technology platform that creates cell-based products for commercial use. Our goal is to  advance novel cell-based solutions for a range of challenges— from medicine, aging and climate change to food scarcity, animal cruelty, sustainability and beyond. We have nearly two decades of experience in cell expansion technology and an in-house GMP manufacturing facility to create a wide range of cell-based products.

Our cell expansion technology can be used for multiple cell types, including human, animal and plant cells. And when we realized how serious the global coffee crisis is, we understood that our technology could provide the solution. 

Could you give us more insight into the growing $130 billion coffee industry and how it’s been affected by global warming?

Global warming is putting the coffee industry at great risk as it significantly reduces the availability of land suitable for growing coffee, while the demand for coffee is constantly on the rise. By 2050, the availability of viable land for coffee cultivation will reduce up to 50% while demand for coffee will triple. Basically, this means we’re going to see a significant reduction in production along with a significant increase in demand- and prices will rise accordingly. 

Tell us more about the proprietary 3D technology platform PluriAgtech and how it develops cell-based products for the coffee industry?

Our patented and validated technology can expand a single cell into billions of distinct cells in a bioreactor system, which provides a 3D micro-environment for cells by mimicking their natural growth environments. To put it simply, we provide cells with the environment they need in order to expand and remain viable as we transform them into innovative products and solutions. Our technology is cost-effective, tightly controlled, fully automated and efficient. It generates cell products on a massive scale with batch-to-batch consistency. 

We know how to create high quality cell-based products from multiple cell sources, so naturally we were up to the challenge of creating cell-based coffee as well.

What makes PluriAgtech special, compared to traditional methods of coffee production? What are some of the key benefits of using cell-based technology in coffee production compared to traditional methods?

Our proprietary technology can create high quality coffee on a mass scale, reduce price instability and minimize the environmental impact of coffee production. 

Our method not only provides a solution for the coffee crisis, it also slashes water usage by 98% and reduces growing areas by 95%, preventing deforestation. 

Are there any ethical or environmental advantages associated with Pluri’s sustainable cell-based approach to producing coffee? Also could you describe any potential challenges or limitations that may arise when implementing this new technology within the industry?

We’ve designed a system that, at scale, can basically replace about 1,000 coffee plants, because we don’t need to grow the entire plant in order to create the finished product. Arabica coffee, the favored species, has weak genetic diversity and only grows at certain temperatures, which means you would basically need to go up in elevation to higher altitudes in order to continue to grow it, which contributes to deforestation. Coffee is also a huge consumer of water, and while growers used to rely solely on rainfall, now in some regions they are having to water the land. As a result, every single cup of coffee we drink requires 140 liters of water during the production process. The environmental impact of conventional coffee production is enormous. 

It may be challenging to introduce innovation and new technologies into this traditional industry, but we are certain our technology is a powerful countermeasure for the coffee crisis.    

How will this innovation impact the overall coffee market and consumers’ experience with their daily cup of coffee and In which ways can individuals who love drinking coffee contribute or support Pluri’s mission towards a more sustainable future for the global coffee market?

Our innovation aims to create high-quality cell-based coffee at mass scale, meeting the growing global demand for coffee, while helping the environment. At the end of the day, we believe cell-based coffee is the future and will become part of our everyday lives with every sip. We are currently introducing this innovation and we would be happy if coffee lovers around the world would learn about it and support our mission. 

Who are the brains behind Pluri and the PluriAgtech platform and what makes you the best? What are your success stories so far?

We have nearly two decades of cell expansion experience. Our technology, long-standing collaborations, robust in-house GMP manufacturing facility, and team of experts (the brains behind it all) enable the manufacturing of a wide range of products, including cell-based coffee. Additionally, our technology is cost-effective and enables industrial scale production, making the dream of cultivated coffee a feasible reality. All these advantages make Pluri a significant global pioneer in the cell-based coffee business. Our recent successes include a landmark collaboration with Israel’s largest food producer, Tnuva Group, to create cultivated meat (the subsidiary is called Ever After Foods), and a $4.2 Million contract signed with the US NIAID and DOD to advance the development of PLX-R18 for Acute Radiation Syndrome, among other successes of course.

At what stage of development is the PluriAgtech platform? What are you currently working on and what is next on your roadmap?

PluriAgtech offers cell-based solutions to optimize crop yields, create more resilient plants and deliver plant based bioactive compounds for medicinal and nutritional purposes. Our team of experts is working to forge a brighter, greener future for agriculture, using our breakthrough cell technology to create eco-friendly alternatives to traditional farming methods and support the agriculture industry. We are currently developing cutting-edge bioactive carriers and biostimulants, harnessing natural delivery mechanisms in plants. We are also currently creating cell-based coffee with the goal to spin it out as a new subsidiary focused on developing innovative products, technologies and intellectual property for the coffee industry. The new subsidiary will be led by Michal Ogolnik.  

Do you have any available opportunities for investors and partnerships in the PluriAgtech project? Any more tips you would like to share with our readers today?

Absolutely. Part of our core strategy is to create partnerships that leverage Pluri’s technology to meet cell-based manufacturing needs for a variety of industries, including agriculture. We invite you all to stay tuned as we venture forward with our goal of reshaping the agricultural landscape and redefining the possibilities of sustainable crop and coffee production.


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