Alternative protein startup Paleo raises € 2M in seed round
This week Paleo raised 2 million euros in a seed round. Paleo develops meat and fish proteins through precision fermentation, that are designed to be added as an ingredient in plant-based meat and fish replacers. The seed capital will be used to continue research and development, and to design an R&D center, pilot plant and experience center.
Paleo is currently developing the production process of six key proteins in meat and fish and is expanding its portfolio. In 2021, in collaboration with Belgian university KU Leuven, the team focused on determining which proteins give meat and fish their unique properties. In 2022, the production process will be scaled up. Once these proteins are ready to market, they are to be added to plant-based meat and fish replacers to increase sensorial experience and the nutritional value.
Hermes Sanctorum, co-founder and CEO expounds: “We are driven by ethical concerns. Meat and fish proteins as they are produced now, have a tremendous impact on animals and ecosystems. And it is not getting better: worldwide animal consumption keeps increasing. We develop food technology to produce meat and fish proteins in an animal-free and sustainable way. Values and technology can change the world.”
Alternative protein technology is evolving rapidly. A few brands of plant-based foods already imitate meat, and the development of cultured meat has been around since a couple of years. Precision fermentation is the third technology to mimic meat and fish. It uses microorganisms (bacteria or yeasts) to make identical proteins as those found in animal products. It was first used to develop vaccines and drugs and only recently was the potential for the food industry discovered. Paleo is the European pioneer in #precisionfermentation for meat and fish proteins.
Based on a March 2021 analysis by Boston Consulting Group, by 2035, every tenth portion of meat, eggs and dairy eaten around the globe is likely to be #alternativeprotein. Higher carbon prices and support for farmers transitioning from animal agriculture to alternative protein inputs could boost consumption to 22% by 2035.
Andy de Jong co-founder and COO: “It is encouraging to see that there is so much interest in what Paleo is developing. European and US investors are contacting us so we accelerate our R&D. It proves that there is room for positive change in the food industry.”
Paleo was founded in October 2020 by Hermes Sanctorum (PhD), bioengineer & former Belgian senator and Andy de Jong (MD), surgeon and medtech entrepreneur.