Eden Brew, a Sydney-based precision fermentation company has secured AU$6.9M in funding to scale production and bring animal-free dairy to market and has hinted at its first products hitting shelves as early as 2023.
Backed by CSIRO, Eden Brew produces an animal-free dairy alternative using precision fermentation technology, to create dairy proteins that have the same taste, texture and nutritional composition of animal dairy.
United States Group Digitalis Ventures is the latest shareholder to join the venture alongside Norco, CSIRO and Main Sequence Ventures. Partner of Digitalis Ventures Steve Allen explains, “Eden Brew is focused on new ways of creating food that nourishes our bodies and planet. For this very reason, we are proud to be on Eden Brew’s growth journey”
Eden Brew CEO and Co-Founder Jim Fader recently appeared in a panel discussion at AltProteins22, and noted that Eden Brew had been exploring the possibility of utilising pre-existing beer brewing and wine fermentation infrastructure for wide scaling of precision fermentation.
Speaking to Food & Drink Business about the raise and their launch plans, Fader explained: “We have plans to launch regionally in Australia, demonstrate that and de-risk it, and then write a large contract for large capacity over a long period of time and run as fast as we can. We have the opportunity to present ourselves to prospective industrial fermenters as an anchor tenant of their capacity.”
“And that’s a really important thing to be able to achieve, so that people put the shovel in the soil, they build these assets, we fill it up with production and then others can take advantage of the capacity it’s there,” Fader said.
Main Sequence partner Phil Morle believes that precision fermentation has the potential to result in “an improvement in the efficiency of current industrial food production that meets the demand of 10 billion people by 2050.”
Fader noted that to achieve this outcome, the public will need further education about the production process of precision fermentation and how little it differs from the existing fermentation process that occurs within cows.
“I think it’s that penny-dropping education that we need to focus on,” Fader said when asked about next steps.
The first product to be brought to market commercially by Eden Brew is likely to be an animal-free ice cream which Fader is hoping to appear on shelves in late 2023/2024. With the product less than two months away from completion, Fader explains that this extended timeframe is to allow for food authorities’ rigorous approval process that ensures the product meets Australia’s high food safety standards.
Production was originally set to occur using Norco’s facilities in Lismore Northern NSW but given widespread flooding earlier in the year is now most likely to take place in the Labrador facilities in Gold Coast QLD.
READ MORE: Eden Brew eyes $20m as milk without cows rises [Financial Review] and