Design of Affordable Plant-Based Foods

Advanced Topics in Entrepreneurship & Innovation
INDENG 190E (2 units)

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Class Description

The goal of this class is to explore the design of affordable, minimally processed plant-based foods (PBF). Working in teams you will learn the food science and economic principles needed to determine how plausible (or not) this is. The class considers technical readings, team presentations, as well as lectures from industry, investors and entrepreneurs working on PBF. At the end of the course, your team will design an innovative PBF that may be a real alternative for low income customers.

Class Format

This class will be taught remotely and will take place during 2021 Summer Session D: July 6-August 13th. This class requires synchronous participation: students are expected to participate in the class during the class times on Tuesdays and Thursdays 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm. View the schedule of classes for more information on the class.

Class Application

The class is open to UC Berkeley students as well as non-UC Berkeley students.

Enrollment Requirements: Students from all majors, both undergraduate and graduate, are welcome. Due to the nature of this class topic, it is highly recommended that students have a strong background in biological sciences, chemistry, chemical engineering or related disciplines. Students from other backgrounds who are interested in the class topic are also welcome to apply as we will form interdisciplinary teams.

UC Berkeley students: If you are interested in enrolling in the class, submit the class application and you can add yourself to the waitlist. After a review of your application, you will be notified if you have been admitted or not and your enrollment will be adjusted appropriately.

Non-UC Berkeley students: If you are interested in enrolling in the class, please submit the class application and follow the appropriate enrollment procedures through the summer sessions office. After a review of your application, you will be notified if you have been admitted or not and your enrollment will be adjusted appropriately.


Ricardo is an inventor and entrepreneur in chemical and biological sciences. As a professor of entrepreneurship and innovation, Ricardo teaches at the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology and is the Co-founder of the Alt.Meat Program at UC Berkeley. Ricardo was also the Founding Director of the Master of Design P. at the Universidad Catolica de Chile. Ricardo has a Ph.D. in Biotechnology from the Imperial College London and has a M.S. in Chemical Engineering from UC Berkeley.

Aaron is an interdisciplinary scientist and entrepreneur working to bridge the gap between the synthetic and biological worlds. His current venture, Intropic Materials, is incorporating enzymes directly inside polymeric materials to enable innovations in the packaging and bio-manufacturing spaces. Aaron has previously worked in Food Science R&D, Consulting, Finance, and as a Chef. Aaron recently earned his PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from UC Berkeley, and holds a BS in Chemistry from UC Santa Cruz.

Alt: Meat Lab

This class is part of SCET’s Alt: Meat Lab. The Alt: Meat Lab is a hub connecting students, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and industry leaders interested in creating the plant-based food of the future. First and foremost an academic resource, the Lab aims to research and educate. Led by Dr. Ricardo San Martin, the Lab works in conjunction with — but independent from — various partners on projects that put the Lab on the front lines of our changing culinary landscape. Although the Lab began its work replicating animal meat, the Lab is broadly interested in all types of animal products, including but not limited to eggs, dairy and seafood. The Alt:Meat Lab is housed at the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology at UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering, and is comprised of the Lab and a course.

View current and previous class offerings of Advanced Topics in Entrepreneurship & Innovation.

Refer to our Courses page for a full list of SCET courses and current class offerings

and our Certificate page for more information on our Certificate in Entrepreneurship & Technology.


Contact SCET Academic Program Manager Michelle Lee at for additional questions.