The California-headquartered alternative protein company and France-headquartered, Bluestar Adisseo Company, a subsidiary of China National BlueStar, announced the partnership on Thursday [February 20]. The joint venture created, called Calysseo, will focus on further developing the FeedKind protein for use in Asia.
FeedKind is a single-cell protein generated during the fermentation of methanotrophic microorganisms along with scavenger microorganisms and methane, ammonia and mineral salts, says its developer. Methane is pumped through a fermenter and the microorganisms metabolize the gas to generate the high-protein biomass, which is dried and pelletized before use.
Commercial-scale production of the novel feed protein is intended to support growth in the aquaculture sector without stressing wild fisheries, said the two entities.
Extensive feeding trials have been carried out on the novel protein source, including research by Norwegian aquaculture research institute, Nofima.
Calysta has a US-based partnership with Cargill in relation building an industrial scale production facility for the SCP.
“We are developing a global commercialization and diversification strategy and talking to potential partners in a number of markets and sectors,” said Calysta.
Joint venture highlights
The new joint venture is focused on bringing the FeedKind alternative protein ingredient to the aquaculture market in Asia, the companies said. The aquafeed market in that region comprises about 70% of the world market.
“Calysta and Adisseo have formed a 50/50 JV company based in Hong Kong, called Calysseo to produce and commercialize FeedKind on an exclusive basis for the Asian aquaculture market,” a spokesperson for Calysta told us. “Our initial focus is the Asian aquafeed market, which has a value of USD $28bn.”
Adisseo has committed to supporting “disruptive technologies,” added Jean-Marc Dublanc, CEO of Adisseo. The company has a goal of becoming a leader in sustainable feed additives and ingredients for the aquaculture market in Asia.
At this time, there is not a focus on developing FeedKind for use with specific aquaculture species within the Asian production space, said the spokesperson. “FeedKind is exclusively licensed to Calysseo JV for aqua, livestock and poultry – for Asian markets,” he added.
As part of the joint venture, a commercial-scale FeedKind production facility is set to be built in China, the companies announced.
The first phase of operation at that new manufacturing site is anticipated to start in 2022, at which point it will generate about 20,000 tons of the FeedKind protein annually, Calysta said. A second planned phase for the site will see it expand to have an additional 80,000 tons of capacity.
“We are in the final stages of evaluating a site in China and expect to make an announcement soon,” the spokesperson said regarding the location of the upcoming production facility. However, the construction of the new facility is already funded.
Determining the location of the planned facility is the next step for the joint venture now that it has been announced, he said.