The Paris-based firm is creating caseins with precision fermentation as a way to produce cheeses which are nearly indistinguishable from the true factor, with out the environmental and animal welfare issues.
A financing spherical of €12 million led by Astanor Ventures, with the participation of PeakBridge, Seventure Companions, Large Thought Ventures and Good Startup shall be used to finance the subsequent section within the firm’s growth and scale its know-how to fulfill industrial demand.
The spherical, accomplished lower than two years after its creation, may even be used to excellent its processed merchandise and provoke the regulatory course of. Frederic Paques, CEO of Standing Ovation, informed FoodNavigator the corporate is creating a B2B mannequin for a ‘fast deployment of commercialization, addressing meals firms all around the world, to leverage present distribution and gross sales channels’. “We place ourselves as product suppliers, not know-how suppliers,” he defined. “The primary merchandise in our pipeline are caseins, and we’re focusing on commercialization in 2024, on a B2B, ingredient branding, mannequin. On a long run, we plan to diversify our provide, and to maneuver down the worth chain, by manufacturing our personal processed merchandise.”
The corporate desires to discover caseins, we have been informed, to acquire true replicas of cheese merchandise, with a give attention to contemporary and delicate cheeses. Standing Ovation stated it has developed a protein manufacturing course of that permits the event of 100% non-animal and lactose-free substitutes for cheese and dairy merchandise.
Describing the ‘easy however progressive course of’, the corporate defined it is ready to produce caseins by microbial fermentation in fermenters, within the absence of any animal product. “Caseins will not be solely the principle proteins in milk, greater than 80%, but in addition those that enable to curdle it into cheese, to provide it its melting traits, or to provide threads,” Paques stated. “These caseins can then be used, with different merchandise of vegetable or mineral origin, to acquire true replicas of conventional cheeses. This methodology makes it attainable to provide the completed merchandise a composition, notably protein, as shut as attainable to that of typical merchandise… We now have targeted first on contemporary and delicate cheese, however we need to goal all sorts of cheeses. We’re additionally already engaged on different dairy substitutes, comparable to yogurt.”
The method is IP protected, each for its upstream (casein manufacturing) and downstream (cheese substitute manufacturing) elements. “Standing Ovation’s know-how has an amazing potential. Nonetheless, bringing the merchandise quickly to the market requires vital sources, and substantial funding had grow to be crucial,” Paques stated.
Romain Chayot, Scientific Director of Standing Ovation, added: “In solely two years, we have now developed a novel and extremely technological course of. We at the moment are in a robust place to construct on this momentum and transition in direction of extra logistically intensive levels, particularly scaling up.”
The shortly rising precision fermentation sector
The search for extra environmentally sustainable manufacturing strategies is an enormous draw of the precision fermentation sector. However little is thought into the potential environmental/vitality impression of commercial scale precision fermentation manufacturing.
“Our know-how is designed to reduce water use, land use and carbon footprint, and our preliminary estimates point out vital positive factors, much like what has been noticed for different proteins produced by precision fermentation,” stated Paques. “We’re presently refining the figures.”
A rising variety of firms, in the meantime, are utilizing precision fermentation to make cheese and milk options. Paques informed us the corporate is assured of with the ability to produce caseins at scale because of its proprietary course of.
“At present, our casein manufacturing is on the industrial pilot stage (kg scale) with our first ‘cheeses’ produced. We shall be upgrading to the ton scale very quickly in 2023,” he revealed.
“A number of firms truly give attention to beta-lactoglobulin, a whey protein. Caseins are proteins which are troublesome to provide, and we’re one of many few firms on this planet targeted solely on caseins. And due to our proprietary methodology, we’re actually one of many only a few ones producing caseins at this scale.
“And cheese is produced from the curdling of caseins. By definition, whey proteins are into whey, the a part of milk that doesn’t curd. Thus, however for just a few exceptions, comparable to Ricotta, if you wish to make cheese, it’s essential produce caseins.”
Precision fermentation start-ups acknowledge that attaining scale is a hurdle to commercialisation. What’s extra, the European Fee is but to approve its first product made this fashion.
“Our merchandise fall underneath the Novel Meals regulation in Europe. In the USA, it’s the GRAS standing that we must get hold of from the FDA,” Paques defined. “We anticipate to file the purposes subsequent yr, for approval in 2024 within the US, and in 2025 in Europe, the place the process is longer.
“Caseins are the milk proteins of cows and different home animals, consumed by people for 1000’s of years. The best way is thus nicely marked out to acquire the inexperienced gentle from the regulatory authorities.”
Astanor Ventures, in the meantime, has invested in over 40 agrifood tech firms worldwide together with French insect farming unicorn Ynsect, US meals waste unicorn Apeel, German vertical farmer Infarm US superior biomaterials firm Fashionable Meadow and Australian plant-based protein agency v2food.
Eric Archambeau, co-founder of Astanor Ventures stated: “Standing Ovation’s know-how represents a paradigm shift for the animal-free dairy market. Casein is the holy grail for the manufacturing of different choices that match typical merchandise in diet, style and texture but it has remained notoriously troublesome to create. The founders’ expertise in biotechnology enabled them to search out the important thing to casein growth, a step forward of many firms. We’re tremendously impressed by the staff’s developments over the previous yr each in product and course of growth and are excited to help them on this subsequent step of their journey.”