Precision Fermentation Newcomer Nutropy Raises €2 Million for Sustainable French Cheese
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Paris-based Nutropy announced it has raised €2 million in a pre-seed round for its novel precision fermented cheese expected to be market-ready within 24 months.
Developed by Nathalie Rolland and Dr. Maya Bendifallah as a means to bring sustainable dairy to the French cheese market, Nutropy has earned early support. The pre-seed round was led by Beast, Big Idea Ventures, and Trellis Road.
The round was supported by VegCapital, FoodHack, Techmind, several international business angels with experience in technology, food technology, and agriculture, and the French government.
Precision fermentation cheese
“Beast is super excited to partner with Nutropy on bringing premium animal-free cheese to the world. We are particularly impressed with Nathalie and Maya’s innovative vision for scaling fermentation processes and their dedication to producing innovative, impactful products. We are proud to welcome them to the growing Beast family of climate deeptech companies”, Patrick Schneider-Sikorsky, founder and managing partner at Beast, said in a statement.
Nutropy says its novel technology gives the animal-free cheese the same texture and creaminess found in conventional cheese. Taste and texture of plant-based dairy products have been stumbling blocks for consumers worldwide, but especially in France where cheese is a mainstay.
Nutropy is the latest tech company to use precision fermentation, which is best-known as the tech powering U.S.-based Perfect Day‘s whey. Nutropy is using it to create casein, the protein in dairy that gives it its signature taste and texture.
“We’ve long been convinced of the critical role of casein in the shift away from animal cheese products. After speaking to the majority of casein startups globally we decided to invest in Nutropy as we were very impressed with the team’s technical ability and the milestones achieved in such a short period of time”, said Anna Ottosson, founding partner at Trellis Road.
“We are excited about Nutropy’s technology and the quality of the products the team has been able to produce. I tried their premium cheese at one of our events, and the texture and taste were indistinguishable from premium, animal-based cheese. Using bio-identical ingredients is a game changer,” says Andrew D. Ive, Founder and Managing General Partner of Big Idea Ventures.
The importance of cheese
“As cheese lovers, we know the importance of cheese in our gastronomic culture and want to offer consumers a wide range of cheeses free of lactose and dietary cholesterol that are produced in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner”, said Rolland, CEO of Nutropy.
Nutropy says its process has the potential to use significantly fewer natural resources and limit the greenhouse gases and water pollution that accompany animal-produced dairy products. It is also developing dairy fatty acids to enhance the creaminess, as well as carefully selected cheese cultures to produce real cheese flavors.
These innovations allow for the next generation of animal-free cheeses that replicate the taste, texture and nutrition of animal cheese. Nutropy has its eyes on the expanding international cheese market, which is worth $200B and growing.