Mycorena’s $27m Series A is the ‘largest-ever’ for Nordic alt-protein

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Swedish biotech startup Mycorena, which makes a mycelium protein ingredient for meat alternatives, has raised a 24 million ($26.8 million) in what it says is the largest-ever Series A funding round for an alternative protein company from the Nordic countries. In fact, it’s the largest Series A round on record for an alternative protein company across the whole of Europe, according to data from AgFunder [disclosure: AgFunder is AFN‘s parent company.]

The Gothenburg-based company has not disclosed the names of investors at this time, stating only that the round includes several new backers as well as participation from “existing shareholders” and is a combination of equity and debt capital.

Mycorena will use the funds to move its key product Promyc from prototype stage to commercialization in both a B2B and B2C capacity. 

Mycorena’s proprietary ingredient Promyc is a filamentous fungi that produces mycelium via fermentation in custom-designed bioreactors. The goal right now is to license Promyc to other food produces hoping to develop vegan meat alternatives, from crispy burgers and tuna analogues.

Mycorena has a few such B2B partnerships in the works right now, including one with the ICA group to launch mycoprotein nuggets to Swedish customers. Last year, Mycorena also launched a fungi-based fat product to be used in other vegan foods for flavor enhancement.

There is also an upcycling component to Mycorena’s process. Via its LIFE RE:FOOD project with the European Union (EU), the company uses side-streams from bakeries, mills, and other food production as feedstock for its own fermentation process. Mycorena indicates on its website that using such bio-waste for higher-value ingredients is a more economical and environmentally friendly use case for food waste than allocating it as animal feed.

The LIFE RE:FOOD project is expected to run until 2024, with the hopes that its results can be duplicated in the wider EU food industry.

Outside of Quorn, there are a few other companies in Europe currently producing alt-meat with mycoproteins, including Germany-based Mushlabs, Scotland’s Enough, which raised a $51 million Series B last year, and two Spanish startups, Innomy and Libre Foods.

The company began construction on the first-ever commercial-scale mycoprotein manufacturing plant in the Nordics. The facility is slated to be operational by 2023 and will be in close physical proximity to multiple leading food and beverage manufacturers.

Go to Publisher: AFN
Author: Jennifer Marston