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Food tech The Protein Brewery uses microbial fermentation to create alternative protein ingredients and has just completed the construction of its pilot plant in Breda, Netherlands and delivered its first food grade production samples of its protein-rich product Fermotein.
Following its €22 million (US$26 million) Series A round in December last year, Dutch fermentation startup The Protein Brewery (TPB) has now completed its pilot plant to start producing its flagship product Fermotein that aims to replace animals in the food chain.
Developed from its proprietary fungi, the company claims that Fermotein not only has a high nutritional value but uses only 1% of land, 5% of water and releases 3% of the carbon emissions compared to traditional beef, and can be produced from crops like cassava, corn, potatoes, sugar cane and sugar beet.
The pilot plant has the capacity to produce 100kg Fermotein per day and it is designed for the entire production process including handling raw materials, brewing, downstream processing, formulation and packaging. After being audited for food safety in April, TPB’s full operations have been ISO 22000:2018 certified.
After the development and certification of its operations, several batches of Fermotein were delivered to business partners consisting mostly of international food producers that will assess the samples and use them for development and production trials. In addition, testing and operating the plant has helped the company with data that it will incorporate in the design of its commercial demo plant.
In a press release seen by Green Queen, founder of TPB, Wim de Laat said that after years of intensive research. the product is on track to be commercialized. “After years of tests in the laboratory, we started our route to the commercialization of protein products made by fermentation technologies in 2020. I am very proud that, together with the team, we have been able to successfully enter the next phase: produce Fermotein in a scalable way. It enables our customers, global food developers, to test our product and make it ready for worldwide consumption.”
With the U.S. approval process for Fermotein as a food ingredient on track, we are ready to further explore our first market and demonstrate our food ingredient in various food products such as meat and fish replacers, vegan snacks and many moreWim de Laat, founder of TPB
The location of TPB’s first, commercial demo plant has been shortlisted to three potential locations in the Brabant region in the Netherlands with production expected to begin in the first half of 2022 with major advancements in its existing brewing process.
Laat added: “With the U.S. approval process for Fermotein as a food ingredient on track, we are ready to further explore our first market and demonstrate our food ingredient in various food products such as meat and fish replacers, vegan snacks and many more.”
Apart from the pilot plant, TPB developed the Food Experience Center (FEC) that is set to open in June with guest chefs showcasing the several possibilities that Fermotein possesses as an ingredient in dishes.
In a prior statement, principal at Novo Holdings that invested in TPB, Thomas Grotkjær said: “Fermotein has a strong nutrition and sustainability profile and can be applicable to a wide range of high-demand products. With it, the company is well positioned to enter a €30 billion [US$35.7 billion]-plus market for alternative proteins.”
Lead image courtesy of The Protein Brewery.