Meat alternative company THIS has raised £4.7m in ‘Seed Plus’ investment, led by London-based fund Backed.

Other venture capital firms involved in the round are Five Seasons Ventures, Idinvest Partners, Seedcamp and Manta Ray Ventures.

The investment will be used for manufacturing capabilities, a new R&D centre and key hires, all key for the business to keep up with growing demand.

THIS has raised £5.6m to date since 2018, from 12 angel investors and VCs.

Following rapid growth, they are one of the fastest growing food businesses in the UK and they’ve experienced a compound growth rate of 35% month-on-month.

Andy Shovel, co-founder of THIS™ commented:”We’ve been able to leverage our strong first few months to obtain this fantastic investment from strong partners. It allows us to massively boost our manufacturing capacity and crucially – to create a formidable innovation engine within the company, by establishing an internal R&D centre.”

Their meteoric rise has seen them place their products in over 1200 outlets across the UK, including national listings with Waitrose, Holland & Barrett, Ocado, and on the menu in Honest Burger and Chilango, amongst many others, as they continue to form partnerships with both retailers and restaurant groups.

Alex Brunicki and Andre de Haes, partners at Backed commented: “Food sustainability is a topic we care a great deal about at Backed and is a major tailwind to be investing into.

“Andy and Pete have created a number of best-in-class products, nurtured a passionate community of customers and executed on an ambitious distribution strategy in lightning quick time. We are thrilled to be backing the team at THIS’”

Carlos Espinal, Seedcamp Managing Partner, added: “Investing in the future isn’t just about investing in hard-tech companies; it’s also about investing in the future of our consumption and the sustainability of food sources and their long-term ecological impact.

“We first invested in Pete and Andy and their incredible vision for THIS a few years back and are proud investors and customers of their delicious products which not only address increased consumer demand for meat-free alternatives but also help contribute towards building a more diverse and sustainable food supply-chain that has already attracted the interest of many top retail brands.”