That the region’s most promising agtech firm, Benson Hill — which has snagged more than $280 million in venture funding — is targeting the plant-based sector is emblematic of why experts and business leaders say the region’s agtech resources provide a competitive advantage in the region’s ability to become a major player in plant-based foods.

With a reputation as a “mecca” of agtech talent, plant-based companies say St. Louis is a place where operations can be centralized.

“You can do the R&D here, you can produce it here and then you distribute it from here. And you can check all three of those boxes and they all make perfect sense,” said Hungry Planet’s Todd Boyman. READ MORE