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Business briefs – Biospringer – Layn – Aleph Farms – Land O’Lakes – Better Juice

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Who said business is boring? Food & Beverage Insider has the 411 on key industry moves affecting innovation and product development.

Biospringer to double capacity at Iowa yeast extract facility

Biospringer by Lesaffre plans to expand its production capacity by 50% at its yeast extract facility in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The investment, which will include new process equipment, will support the growing market trend for natural origin ingredients derived from fermentation.

“With our products range and dedicated technical and scientific teams, we support our customers in the development of flavorful recipes and solve specific development challenges: taste improvement, formulation of healthy and nutritionally balanced recipes,” said Brice-Audren Riché, CEO, Biospringer. “The North American market for yeast extract is growing at a robust rate. This significant investment is in line with our will to increase our ability to answer our customers’ needs.”

The expansion will also support the production of yeast-based products for large multinational companies or specialized niche companies in the biopharma, diagnostics, food & feed bioingredients, probiotic and starter cultures, renewable chemicals and bio-agriculture industries.

Layn invests $148 million to support R&D

Layn Natural Ingredients is investing US$148 million to expand its infrastructure and further its innovation, research and development (R&D) and secure its global supply chain of natural botanical extracts and natural sweeteners.

The investment will fund the construction of a manufacturing facility scheduled for completion in three years. Once finished, the facility will be able to process an additional 4,000 megatons of stevia leaf extract per year. Layn will also expand its sustainable agronomy innovation programs to expand its transparent and traceable supply chain.

Consumers worldwide are increasingly demanding more natural ingredients over synthetics, and the strategically planned expansion will meet the growing global demand of natural sweeteners and polyphenol-rich botanical ingredients.

Aleph Farms completes $105M Series B funding round

Aleph Farms, the cultivated meat company growing steaks directly from non-GMO animal cells, has completed a $105 million Series B funding round that will further its plans for large scale global commercialization of cultivated beef steaks and portfolio expansion.

Near-term milestones include scaling-up manufacturing, growing operations internationally, and expanding its product lines and technology platform ahead of Aleph Farms’ initial market launch in 2022. The company is currently working with regulatory agencies on its plans for market entry.

“We are thrilled to grow our relationships with existing partners, and welcome select new investors in this funding round,” said Didier Toubia, co-founder and CEO of Aleph Farms. “This additional capital from top-tier partners with unparalleled experience and expertise brings us significantly closer to our vision of providing secure and unconditional access to high-quality nutrition to anyone, anytime, anywhere. We see our investors as partners for building this new category of meat and it was critical to us that they share our strong commitment to improving the sustainability of our global food systems.”

New initiative sparks promise for more climate-friendly dairy supply

The Hershey Co., Land O’Lakes Inc. and the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay have partnered to implement on-farm best management practices to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and help improve water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

Initial funding for Sustainable Dairy PA comes from The Hershey Co.’s $300,000 commitment to support the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and Land O’Lakes in helping install agricultural conservation practices on Land O’Lakes member dairy farms. The partnership includes 119 Land O’Lakes member-owners in Central Pennsylvania that ship 50% or more of their milk supply to Hershey.

The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay will use the funds to leverage additional grant funding to implement conservation plans and innovative on-farm environmental practices. The solutions range from riparian buffer plantings that reduce stream bank erosion and improve habitat to animal waste storage systems and other sustainable farming practices to support a reduction in GHG emissions and water pollution.

The initiative has begun working with dairy farmers in south-central Pennsylvania and is actively building a list of their conservation needs that will guide the program’s priorities. In addition to working with the initial 119 farms, the partnership has the potential to reach more than 400 Land O’Lakes member farms supplying milk to Hershey as funding and support grows.

Better Juice raises $8 million in seed funding

Better Juice Ltd., an Israel-based food tech startup that developed an enzymatic technology to reduce sugar content in fruit juice, has secured US$8 million in seed funding that will support the company’s growth.

The start-up’s enzymatic technology uses all-natural ingredients to convert fructose, glucose, and sucrose into prebiotic dietary fibers and other non-digestible molecules. Reducing up to 80% of all sugars, Better Juice’s non-GMO technology is designed to target orange juice’s specific sugar composition to naturally create a low-calorie, reduced-sugar product with a delicate sweetness. Better Juice opened a pilot plant in January 2021.

The company will use the investment to build its first full-scale manufacturing plant in Israel that will increase production capacity by 40-fold while generating up to US$50 million sales annually. The company will use the funds to expand the sales and marketing teams to support its commercialization stage.

“We are excited to complete this investment round with the support of leading venture capital and CPG companies from around the globe,” said Eran Blachinsky, Ph.D., founder and CEO, Better Juice. “This investment will enable us to accelerate our growth and expand into other product lines, such as ice cream, soft drinks and jam.”

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