Dutch fermentation start-up Farmless announced that it has raised €4.8 million to produce functional proteins for the F&B industry.
Farmless’s proteins are said to provide a complete amino acid profile and suit multiple applications such as meat, dairy and egg alternatives.
The seed round was led by World Fund and Vorwerk Ventures. The new funds will enable Farmless to build a pilot brewery in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, to further develop its fermentation platform and continue the regulatory approval process for novel foods.
Adnan Oner, founder and CEO of Farmless, said: “If we unlock the protein-producing powers of the microbial kingdoms we can create a future worth getting excited about. We can have an abundant, cruelty-free food supply and rewild the world, restore forests, all while drawing down gigatonnes of CO2 from the air.”
Farmless’s fermentation process feeds microorganisms a liquid made with CO2, hydrogen, nitrogen and renewable energy, without the use of sugar. After fermentation, the microorganisms, part of the end product, are separated from water, dried, and turned into a high-protein powder. Farmless claims this fermentation process is carbon neutral and requires 5000 times less land to produce 1kg of proteins than beef.
Nadine Geiser, principal at European climate tech VC fund, World Fund, commented: “Moving away from sugar as a feedstock for fermentation represents a significant opportunity to reduce CO2 emissions of fermentation-based food production. At World Fund, we only invest in start-ups with the greatest climate performance potential – and there is a significant need to reduce emissions in the farming, agriculture and land use category. This category is responsible for around 22% of emissions globally, but receives just 12% of venture funding for climate, so it’s critical we back more start-ups like Farmless, which has the potential to drastically reduce land use from agriculture, and to improve biodiversity globally.”