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Swedish startup Mycorena has announced the closure of a successful €24 million Series A funding round, which represents the biggest investment into alternative protein in the Nordic sector. The raise will support taking a proprietary plant protein innovation from concept to commercial release stage.
Promyc is a fungi-based fermented foodstuff that Mycorena wants to leverage to disrupt both meat and plant-based sectors. As a growing subsector of the wider alternative protein market, fungi-based foods are seeing increased investment. Mycorena claims the recent Series A puts it firmly at the front of the European movement.
Maintaining a positive trajectory
Since its inception in 2017, Mycorena has chased ambitious expansion deadlines. Promyc was launched in 2019, with conviction strong enough to underpin the construction of a new demonstration facility. Company headquarters were housed alongside, with the location opening in 2021. The largest of its kind throughout Europe, the Mycorena Innovation and Development Center (MIND) has allowed for fast scale-up and IP generation. The new Series A funding will push this to the next level, with commercial manufacturing and the launch of Promyc, in numerous iterations.
“Thanks to our recent rapid growth and the expansion of the Mycorena Innovation and Development Center, we have been able to scale at a pace that we never thought possible,” Ramkumar Nair, founder and CEO of Mycorena said in a statement. “Funds raised from the current Series A round will be instrumental in elevating our trajectory even further. It allows us to invest heavily in both innovation and growth and, most importantly, bring us one step closer to commissioning the first-of-its-kind and globally unique Promyc Production Plant.”
No confirmation has been offered about the names of those investing in the Series A. The startup has acknowledged that new funding partners have come on board, alongside some existing backers who have doubled down. Total funding to date has passed $35 million.
The next phase
The Promyc plant construction project started in late 2021, with a proposed completion date of 2023. When finished, it will be the first mycoprotein-specific plant in the Nordic region. Being built in Falkenberg, Sweden, Mycorena claims it will offer easy access to multiple plant-based big hitters and help create a hub of food innovation.
Vegan food developments powered by Promyc and their subsequent launches are a top priority, alongside the development of newer innovations, such as the fungi-based fat that the startup debuted in November last year. Hybrid concepts are being explored, with a view to working with other food manufacturers to debut commercial releases, hopefully, this year. The Series A is helping to fund strategic partnership formation.
“This milestone is an embodiment of the exponential progress we’ve made in the last year,” Anton Johansson, CFO at Mycorena said in a statement. “In one go, we have raised more capital than through all previous financing rounds combined, and our total funding has more than tripled. The trust placed in Mycorena by existing and new investors is a confirmation of a job well done, a strong motivator to never settle, and a spur to achieve even more in the future!”
Paving the way for mushroom tech
Over in the U.S. Meati Foods has experienced a major win in the form of a sold-out pre-order run. The mycelium meat manufacturer made it known that its chicken cutlets would be available to buy, with thousands selling out in under 24 hours. The company has announced that a steak analogue will be released soon, also developed using mycelium fermentation.
Better Meat Co. is looking to achieve similar things as Mycorena by focusing on mycoprotein. The Sacramento-based startup revealed last year that it had completed its large fermentation plant, designed specifically to manufacture “thousand of pounds” of its proprietary mycoprotein, Rhiza.
All photos by Mycorena.