Isha Datar

Executive Director


Isha has been pioneering the field of cellular agriculture since 2009, when she began a deep-dive investigation into the technical challenges and opportunities involved in producing cultured meat. In 2010 Isha published "Possibilities for an in-vitro meat production system" in the food science journal Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies.

She quickly discovered that cellular agriculture research was not held back by a lack of interest or expertise, but instead by a lack of designated funding channels directed at this intersectional work. Thus began her quest to establish the field of animal products made without animals, one recognized by researchers, funding agencies, and investors.

A stint in Policy and Public Affairs at GlaxoSmithKline illuminated the cooperative relationship between non-profits, academia, and companies in translating beneficial science out of the lab and into society. Isha has used a model established in the advancement of medical research to accelerate cellular agriculture, by funding early stage, foundational research in academia in order for ready-to-market technologies to be developed for commercial use.

Isha became Executive Director of New Harvest in January 2013. She co-founded Muufri, making milk without cows, in April 2014 and Clara Foods, making eggs without chickens, in November 2014.

Isha has a BSc. in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Alberta and a Masters in Biotechnology from the University of Toronto.

Isha enjoys rooftops, houseplants, long walks through the city, and the freedom of not owning a car.

Erin Kim

Communications Director


Erin holds a BA in Women's and Gender Studies and Human Geography from the University of British Columbia, and a JD from the University of Alberta with a specialization in Environmental Law.

Erin started out at as one of New Harvest's first volunteers in 2014, balancing her studies with writing content and handling social media. Her long held interests in futurism, sustainability, and global catastrophic risk mitigation led Erin to the discovery of animal products made without animals, and she spent much of her time as a law student diving deep into the world of cellular agriculture. 

Following the completion of her law degree, she took on the role of Communications Director full-time, handling relations with media and making the science of cellular agriculture accessible to the public. Prior to working in cell ag, Erin spent time in legal advocacy at Pivot Legal Society and many years working in special education in Vancouver, Canada.

Erin loves having grown up in the Pacific Northwest, yoga, dance, quoting Seinfeld, and watching bad reality TV.



Daan Luining

Research Strategist


Daan is a molecular biologist and tissue engineer with diverse, hands-on laboratory experience in DNA sequencing, mass spectrometry, chromatography, cell culture and tissue engineering.

Daan has a BSc. in Molecular Biology from the University of Applied Sciences Leiden, and a MSc. in Science-Based Business from the University of Leiden. Daan has worked for BaseClear group as a DNA sequencing technician; at Leiden University on using mass spectrometry for protein identification and tissue imaging, and at the University of Utrecht on cost-effective protein extraction techniques for mass spectrometry.

During his bachelor's degree, Daan discovered his passion for tissue engineering for the purposes of creating cultured meat. He began focusing his education towards cultured meat development, leading him to perform research at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, on the vascularization of scaffolds. 

Most recently, Daan worked on the cultured meat project at Maastricht University in the lab of Professor Mark Post. His work was specifically focused on scaling technologies, developing a microcarrier bead system for satellite cell expansion. Daan joined New Harvest in the spring of 2016, where he is mobilizing the scientific community to advance the field of cellular agriculture through strategic, co-designed research projects.

Daan is passionate about science - especially biology, physics, and astronomy. His music style of choice is Italo Disco which he loves to dance to.

Board of Directors

Scott Banister

Scott built his career by identifying new markets and shaping innovative products for them. In 1995, he identified search engines as a significant advertising medium and invented the first products to automate marketing across multiple search engines, ultimately creating the bid-for-placement business model. As an initial investor and Director at PayPal, he was a co-inventor of the 'email payments' product now widely used on eBay. In 2000, Scott saw opportunity in the rapid growth of email traffic, co-founding IronPort Systems and serving as CTO. Scott is now a successful angel investor with past or present investments in Zappos, Ekso Bionics, Practice Fusion, ClassPass, Bell Biosystems, Bridge International Academies, Moon Express, Postmates, Thumbtack, and Uber.

Jason Matheny

Jason Matheny founded New Harvest in 2004. He became director of Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) in 2015, after serving as a program manager, associate office director, and office director. He previously worked for the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University, where his work focused on existential risks, the World Bank, the Center for Biosecurity, the Center for Global Development, the Applied Physics Laboratory, and on national security projects for the US government. He holds a PhD in Applied Economics from Johns Hopkins University, an MPH from Johns Hopkins, an MBA from Duke University, and a BA from the University of Chicago. He has published on biotechnology, neurotechnology, risk analysis, demography, economics, and bioethics.

Board of Advisors

Ryan Bethencourt


Ryan is a scientist, entrepreneur, and biohacker best known for his work as Program Director and Venture Partner at Indie.Bio, a biology accelerator and early stage seed fund. Bethencourt's also former head of life sciences at the XPRIZE foundation, a co-founder and CEO of Berkeley Biolabs, a biotech accelerator, and Halpin Neurosciences, an ALS therapeutics-focused biotech company. Bethencourt also co-founded Counter Culture Labs, a citizen science nonprofit, and Sudo Room, a hacker space based in downtown Oakland, California.

Marianne Ellis

Bioreactor designer

Dr Ellis studied for a BEng in Chemical & Bioprocess Engineering and a PhD in Biochemical Engineering at The University of Bath. After a year as a postdoctoral researcher she took up an academic position in 2005. She is an Associate Member of the IChemE, a committee member of the Biochemical Engineering Special Interest Group (BESIG). and a Deputy-Director of the Centre for Regenerative Medicine.

Dr Ellis's research aims to address the challenges of scale-up that are currently being faced in tissue engineering. The work is focused on upstream bioprocessing for tissue engineering, specifically designing and fabricating bioreactors for large-scale cell culture. She applies the chemical engineering principles of 'unit operations' and the relevant fluid dynamics, mass transfer and reaction kinetics to enable biological advances to be translated into a viable product for use in the clinic.

Andras Forgacs

Cellular agriculture entrepreneur

Andras is an entrepreneur and venture investor in technology and life science. He co-founded Modern Meadow in 2011. Previously, he had also co-founded Organovo, a leader in tissue engineering which pioneered the use of 3D bio-printing to create human tissue for a range of medical applications. Organovo’s bio-printer was named one of the top inventions of 2010 by Time Magazine and the company was recognized by MIT Technology Review on its TR50 list of most innovative companies for 2012.

Andras also served as Managing Director with Richmond Global, an international technology-focused venture fund. Previously, Andras was a consultant in the New York office of McKinsey & Company focused on biopharma and private equity. Earlier, he was a founding member of Citigroup’s corporate and investment banking e-commerce group where he led a team that developed award winning financial technology products and advised large cap corporate clients on a range of corporate finance challenges.

He is also co-founder and Chairman Emeritus of the international non-profit Resolution Project. Andras is a Kauffman Fellow with the Center for Venture Education and a Term Member with the Council on Foreign Relations. Andras holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts with honors from Harvard University.

Mark Post

Cellular agriculture pioneer

Professor Mark Post is a medical doctor who has had several appointments as assistant professor at Utrecht University, Harvard University, as associate professor at Dartmouth college, and as full professor at Eindhoven University of Technology and Maastricht University. He currently holds the chair of the Physiology Department at Maastricht University.

His main research interest is the engineering of tissues for medical applications and for food. The medical applications focus on the construction of blood vessels that can be used as grafts for coronary artery bypass grafting. Tissue engineering for food has lead to the development of cultured beef from bovine skeletal muscle stem cells in an effort to supplement and perhaps transform the traditional meat production through livestock. Dr Post co-authored 150 papers in leading peer-reviewed scientific journals and received during his career close to 30 million dollars in funding and awards from different sources including government, charity and industry. In August 2013, he presented the world’s first hamburger from cultured beef. 

Adam Sender


Adam Sender is the founder and chief investment officer of Sender Company & Partners, a hedge fund specializing in market volatility. Previously, Mr. Sender managed Exis Capital Management from 1998 to 2014. Mr. Sender started the Sender Collection in 1998, and over time has evolved into a distinguished and well-known collection of contemporary art that has ranked amongst the top 100 art collections in the world. Mr. Sender has generously supported exhibitions and institutions around the world through financial contributions and the loan of artwork. He serves on the board of MOCA LA and has a number of significant relationships with museums and non-profit organizations. Mr. Sender received Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Michigan in 1991. He is an active philanthropist in causes ranging from The National September 11 Memorial to The Clinton Foundation, The Woodstock Animal Sanctuary and PETA.


Amy Wolfcale

Brand Strategist

Amy Wolfcale is the CEO and Founder of two brand strategy consultancies, Falcon and Wolf and Thought Leadership Strategies.  She has led global branding, communications and marketing for some of the world's most iconic brands including Dow Jones, The Wall Street Journal, the MONEY Group at Time Inc., Consumer Reports, and The Markle Foundation.  She helps brands understand how to tell their stories effectively in a multi-channel world and how to build loyal, engaged communities in an era of infinite distraction. She specializes in traditional media relations, social media strategies, mobile and digital programs, marketing, advertising, and public affairs. Her brand strategies are credited with building global brands and increasing awareness and market share while driving revenue.  She also teaches social media strategy and strategic communications at the NYU School of Professional Studies.  She frequently advises clients on sustainability programs, corporate social responsibility initiatives, and strategic partnerships.  She holds a Masters in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. 




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