It now has ambitious scaling plans in Europe, after receiving a funding injection of $85million (EUR 78million).
The Series E fundraising was managed by an Oman Investment Authority group. Nourish Ventures (Griffith Foods venture capital group), Rage Capital and Alphacy Investment were the participants. Sidhi Capital, Sidhi Capital and S2G Ventures also participated. Tyson Ventures was responsible for financing Series E. Bunge Ventures managed it. Maple Leaf Foods and Evolution VC Partners are other investors. Gaingels is the lead.
This round represents the largest single financing for the company since its inception in 2013,. It brings total funding to date to $200 millions. The new investment will enable MycoTechnology’s proprietary fermentation platform, to expand its global product range and to reach more customers worldwide, with an emphasis on Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
” This fundraise validates the value of our breakthrough proposition ,”, said Alan Hahn (CEO and co-founder of MycoTechnology). “It will be a catalyst to accelerate our growth further and faster and drive our plans to add more new-to-the-world ingredients from the fungal kingdom.”
The company’s current ingredient portfolio includes FermentIQ, a fermented plant-based protein, and ClearIQ, a range of bitter blocking and flavour modulating ingredients.
The company claims it uses a unique mushroom fermentation process in order to harness the power of mycelia to create transformative foods ingredients. The company has had previous commercial successes partnering with major and emerging brands.
“Mycelia are the powerful, invisible root system of the mushrooms,” explained Lisa Wetstone, Director, Innovation and Growth Strategy at MycoTechnology. “MycoTechnology has created a variety of solutions to address the following issues: sugar reduction, sustainability protein, nutrition density and more
The FermentIQ protein blend is made with pea protein and rice protein and shiitake mushrooms mycelia. “ This process produces a more flavorful, digestible and functional protein ,” Wetstone explained to FoodNavigator ” enabling the development of next-generation plant-based and protein fortified products .”
. A fungus releases a variety of enzymes in its environment that break down biopolymers and leave behind beneficial metabolites.
“These attributes of mushroom mycelia enable our unique fermentation processing to improve the physical properties of our pea and rice protein blend – including taste, aroma, solubility, and colour .”
The FermentIQ protein can be used in multiple applications from snacks, baked goods and protein beverages to meat and dairy alternatives. You can get it as a powder or texturized.
FermentIQ’s plant protein solutions have significantly better sensory qualities than unfermented plants proteins, claimed Wetstone. Developers can now meet customer demand for higher-protein products without having to compromise on flavor.
“ Beyond the improvement of physical attributes, the natural enzymatic process of mycelial fermentation alters the complex structure of the proteins, increasing solubility, improving digestibility and reducing anti-nutrient content.”
But isn’t all the good stuff in mushrooms in the fruiting body, not the mycelium? ” It is common to believe that mushrooms’ fruiting bodies are more interesting and nutritious than mycelia. Wetstone agreed. The FermentIQTXP texturized protein product, Wetstone stated, has superior texture, high oil and water holding, and is a great choice for dairy beverages. It also offers an improved taste and mouthfeel, which allows formulators to get closer to the holy-grail of plant-based dairy.
“In plant-based cheese in particular,” added Wetstone, “we have uncovered that our fermentation process improves stretch, melt, and shred, allowing formulators to get closer to the holy-grail of plant-based dairy.”
‘We believe the opportunity is substantial’
The company believes that in Europe, plant-based meat and dairy continue to grow rapidly, creating enormous market opportunity for established and new brands alike.
” Wetstone revealed that we have ambitious projections for the ,” region. ” We believe there is a lot of opportunity. Our portfolio will allow the next wave in plant protein innovation .” The company believes that there are significant opportunities for European mushroom-derived natural flavour.
ClearIQ, a natural extract of the liquid fermentation of mycelia mushrooms, is an alternative to synthetic flavours. We were informed that this platform of natural flavours works directly with the taste receptors to produce a wide-spectrum bitter block, flavor modulation, and flavour clarification. “It’s highly effective in plant-based protein, meats, and dairy beverages; sugar and salt-reduced products; and functional product features featuring desirable ingredients that pose flavour challenges. Wetstone said fermentation’s rich history can make it more popular with European consumers. “ Fermentation is one of the most ancient food processing techniques. This is used for beer, bread and kombucha making. The next generation in fermentation is our platform, which uses mushroom mycelia fermentation to replace yeast and bacteria.
” At the end of it all, the main driving factor for consumer purchase and repurchase .”
are better taste and texture.