Great ambitions behind new local biotech production-
The biotech company Unibio, which won the Danish Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year competition in 2015, will construct new production facilities in Kalundborg. The facilities which are to produce sustainable protein for animal feed will be built in connection with Kalundborg’s former water purifying plant. The mayor of Kalundborg, Martin Damm (V), will participate in the ground-breaking ceremony on 12 April.
Securing access to healthy and affordable food for the fast-growing global population is one of the largest challenges of the future. This has made Unibio stake a lot to develop a technology that can mass produce bacterial protein – in a green and sustainable way. Industrial production of protein using methane as the main feedstock, a greenhouse gas with a far stronger global warming potential than CO2, enables a total decoupling of protein production from farming. The technology has a huge potential as protein is used in large quantities in meat production etc. Conventional protein production also adversely impacts the environment, e.g. in terms of deforestation and the use of pesticides.
The new production facilities will be built in cooperation with Cowi and CKJ Steel, among others, and construction is expected to be finished by end-2016.
According to Unibio CEO Henrik Busch-Larsen, the company has been busy: “UniBio has been through a very exciting period. Last year we received, together with our research partners, a USD 2.2m grant from Innovation Fund Denmark for continued research. We raised a significant amount of capital, and we inaugurated a fermentation centre at the Technical University of Denmark, where we have developed our unique fermentation production technology, the U-Loop technology. We currently negotiate with several international cooperation partners, and we are in dialogue with a number of very potential investors.”
Henrik Busch-Larsen states that Unibio’s technology has great global perspectives, and that achieving the aim of becoming an established Danish top 100 company requires a large amount of capital. A major capital round is already being planned, and Unibio makes no attempt to hide that the company aims for a future IPO. Henrik Busch-Larsen goes on to tell that the entire production from the future production facilities in Kalundborg has already been sold to a Danish animal feed producer.
“We see the construction of a plant in Denmark as the final step towards the global roll-out of the technology, and we expect a lot from this project. We have potential clients on hand from several regions of the world, and their eyes are right now focused on Kalundborg in Denmark, Henrik Busch-Larsen concludes.
Background and facts
· Unibio’s new production facilities will employ five employees
· The Danish Minister for Energy, Utilities and Climate, Lars Chr. Lilleholt, was the keynote speaker at the inauguration of the new pilot plant, and guests had come from all over the world. Shortly after, Unibio won the Danish Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year competition within the Life Sciences category.
· While methanotrophic bacteria have been known for decades, and while the process technology has been proven before, at least in part as an older technology was implemented in Norway, Unibio has refined the technology together with the Technical University of Denmark. This has been done around a new patent and a business model without scalability limitations, providing a superior protein yield from methane, an inexhaustible source that is both clean and highly affordable.
· Thus part of the solution to the challenges facing the planet’s food supply lies with Unibio. This solution is a new highly potential and mass-produced microbial protein using methane as the main feedstock; a tested, safe, eco-friendly, ethical technology approved by the EU capable of industrializing protein production for animal feed and pet food. The result is a premium protein product that Unibio has branded UniProtein®.
· Converting methane into protein by using a cheap and abundant resource such as natural gas is key to addressing this challenge, and basically what Unibio does is to integrate the energy and food systems, while decoupling protein production from farming and fishing.
About Unibio and UniProtein
· Unibio is the developer of an innovative bacterial protein production technology, called the U-Loop technology, converting natural gas into a highly concentrated protein (UniProtein®) for sustainable food production targeting the animal compound feed markets.
· The process used occurs in nature every day; Unibio has simply used a natural process in a bio-industrial setting. The protein product is approved in the EU for all fish and animals, and it has shown very good results when utilized in feed mixes especially for fish, pigs and chicken.
· Unibio’s intention is to develop a global brand for a portfolio of premium protein products and to control quality and production by investing in manufacturing facilities worldwide alongside joint venture partners.
The Kalundborg Symbiosis is the world’s first industrial symbiosis, where the by-product or residual product of one enterprise is used as a resource by another enterprise.
· This symbiosis is the foundation stone of the unique way of cooperation in Kalundborg, where enterprises and the municipality cooperate to achieve mutual benefits, both in terms of the environment and of the bottom lines of the companies.
For further information and pictures, please contact Unibio at +45 63 10 40 40 or visit email@example.com