Plantible Foods, creator of an allergen-free protein derived from lemna, has completed a pre-seed funding round led by Unshackled Ventures.
The US-based firm grows organic lemna (also known as duckweed), an aquatic crop that grows on the surface of water. It says that protein from the crop is “more digestible than pea, soy, or algae and it possesses unique functional properties that are better than egg whites”.
Applications for the protein ingredient include dairy alternatives, meat alternatives, snacks, smoothies and ready-to-drink beverages.
Located in San Marcos, California, Plantible Foods was originally founded in the Netherlands by Tony Martens and Maurits van de Ven. As the firm grew, they moved their operations to the US.
With the investment, the firm said it will be able to finalise its proprietary extraction technology and work with leading food scientists on the commercialisation of its ingredients. The company said it is months away from opening its first commercial pilot facility.
Plantible Foods co-founder Tony Martens said: “The global population is growing while we have fewer natural resources to produce enough food. We have created the world’s most sustainable, applicable and simply best plant-based protein that can help feed the world, while not destroying the planet in the process. Unshackled Ventures brings our vision a step closer.”
Manan Mehta, general partner of Unshackled Ventures, said: “Plantible Foods is not only a high-protein alternative to traditional sources, but it’s also good for the environment. It’s incredible what the founding team has been able to do on non-arable land with a fraction of the water requirement as compared to alternative plant-based proteins.
“We are excited to add another socially and economically conscious investment in our portfolio. We look to help them succeed faster in the US.”
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