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Swedish food tech Mycorena is going to establish a large-scale production facility for its fungi-based protein. The factory, which will be built as a joint venture with property management firm Falkenbergsgruppen, claims to be “one of its kind in all of Scandinavia” and is slated to begin supplying the food industry with “several thousand tons” of fungi protein by next year.
Mycorena is set to build its Falkenberg-based factory in Sweden to produce its mycoprotein, which it describes as the first-of-its-kind in Scandinavia. The facility will be co-owned by Mycorena Fastighets AB, a joint venture between the food tech and the property management company, and is set to “pave the way for global expansion” of Mycorena’s sustainable Promyc solution.
The Swedish startup’s Promyc is a unique fungi-based protein, which is designed to replace both animal-based proteins and the widespread use of soy protein in plant-based products. So far, Mycorena produces Promyc in its Gothenburg-based pilot-scale fermentation plant, where side-streams of food waste from industrial processing, such as bread dough from bakeries, are used to grow their high-protein, sustainable fungus ingredient.
Since its inception in 2017, the company has debuted their protein in several dishes created by Chef Oscar Lexö, and plan to take a B2B approach to supply professional commercial kitchens, foodservice businesses and food producers.
Mycorena says that Falkenberg was chosen because of the “region’s drive for innovation and growth” and “historically strong” reputation within the F&B industry, with actors such as Carlsberg also based in the area.
We are proud that Mycorena chooses Falkenberg. We believe that they can create synergies together with other actors in the local food cluster.Jan Melkersson, Head of Business & Regional Development, Falkenberg
“We are very happy to present this investment that will contribute [to] several jobs in Falkenberg. It is also a venture that has been made possible thanks to our strong culture of food and cuisine in Falkenberg and Halland,” said Jörgen Hallgren, board member of Mycorena Fastighets AB.
“We are proud that Mycorena chooses Falkenberg. We believe that they can create synergies together with other actors in the local food cluster. In Falkenberg there are large actors like Carlsberg, Sia Glass and Arla,” added Jan Melkersson, head of business and regional development at Falkenberg municipality.
Once the factory opens in 2022, it will operate both as a model factory and an R&D hub for the company, and crucially set the foundations for Mycorena to launch both in Sweden and internationally. The food tech says that their aim is to supply “tens of thousands of tons” of Promyc before the end of the decade.
As a young company, it is crucial that we succeed in building relationships with knowledgeable partners and with visionaries who dare to believe in us.Ramkumar Nair, Founder & CEO, Mycorena
The brand new facility is being supported with financing from FBG Invest, a local investor network whose members have been involved with both the food tech and Falkenbergsgruppen for some time.
“As a young company, it is crucial that we succeed in building relationships with knowledgeable partners and with visionaries who dare to believe in us,” commented Mycorena founder and CEO Ramkumar Nair. “We also view it as extremely positive that there is high willingness to invest in [us].”
As the alternative protein sector gains greater momentum, more players are now using fermentation to develop sustainable alternatives, rather than relying on plant-based or cell-based solutions. Alongside Mycorena are a number of startups creating fungi-based proteins, such as Chicago startup Nature’s Fynd who has created a complete fungi protein dubbed Fy.
Dutch company The Protein Brewery is another startup “brewing” sustainable proteins, and has created Fermotein, its flagship protein-rich versatile ingredient that can be used to make a range of animal-free alternative foods.
All images courtesy of Mycorena AB.