UK biotech company, Deep Branch, has secured further investment to scale up the sustainable generation of protein that can be used as animal feed.
The company is turning industrial emissions into novel protein sources for animal feed and now, with European Innovation Council (EIC) Accelerator funding of €2.5 million the company will be able to scale up the production process. The funding will go towards building a new facility at the Netherlands-based Brightlands Chemelot Campus, a hub for circular chemistry and chemical processes, which Deep Branch expects to be operational by Q2 2021.
Using microbes to convert CO2 from industrial emissions, into a new type of single-cell protein, called Proton, Deep Branch has developed a low carbon animal feed with a nutritional profile that is comparable with fishmeal. However, unlike fishmeal, Proton can be produced year-round, reducing the impact of any seasonal fluctuations in price or yield.
Extensive research and testing will help the partners to gather valuable data about the cost, digestibility, nutritional quality and carbon footprint of Proton.
This latest funding will enable Deep Branch to scale up increasing production to enable animal feed manufacturers to expedite performance testing of the new protein.
Peter Rowe, CEO of Deep Branch, said: “We are developing a new, sustainable way of producing animal feed, which reduces CO2 emissions by more than 90 percent, compared to the currently used protein sources.
“Setting up the pilot plant represents an important next step in finding the perfect recipe for Proton that meets the requirements of feed producers. We’ll be undertaking further trials with BioMar and AB Agri, two leading animal feed companies that support the salmon and poultry farming industries. Thanks to the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation support, we can expand our production capacity to match the volumes that feed producers need to run these trials.”