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Precision Fermentation Targets the Global Protein Need

Global demand for protein is expected to double by 2050 due to population growth and rising incomes. Within the food industry, pioneering research is developing new low-carbon protein sources to meet this need without burdening the planet.

For Danish biosolutions company Novonesis, precision fermentation was the obvious starting point for innovation. Used for decades to produce functional enzymes for food and beverages, the technology is now at the heart of the company’s advanced protein solutions.

The outcome is new protein ingredients of similar nutritional quality to the proteins in meat and milk. But, because they are produced by microorganisms in a tank of sugar and water, carbon emissions may decrease immensely. Water consumption and land use could also be reduced by 90 percent.

Carbon emissions from new protein ingredients may be up to 90% lower

At the same time, the strictly controlled process promises to deliver a reliable protein supply, independent of climate change, harvest variations or zoonotic epidemics.

Novonesis has extensive fermentation knowledge to draw on when encoding microorganisms, such as yeast or filamentous fungi, for protein production. The goal is to develop specialised proteins with an optimised amino acid composition or improved taste – meeting the dietary needs of distinct consumer groups or optimising the protein content of a food or beverage brand.