Bühler teams up with Big Idea Ventures to invest in meat alternative startups

SWITZERLAND – Grain and food processing solutions provider, Bühler has announced a partnership with Big Idea Ventures to accelerate the success journey of start-ups developing alternatives to animal-derived protein products.

Big Idea Ventures, a global venture capital fund, recently launched the New Protein Fund seeking to raise US$250 million to invest, accelerates, and scales global food companies focused on plant-based foods, cell-based foods, and related technologies and ingredients.

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Big Idea Ventures runs four accelerator programs annually in New York and Singapore and with the New Protein Fund, the venture capital firm said that it will invest in and accelerate up to 100 plant-based and cell-based companies globally.

By partnering with Big Idea Ventures’ New Protein Fund, the Swiss company joins Tyson Ventures, Temasek and other strategic investors to accelerate the sustainable protein revolution.

“Together we can support the growth of the new generation of leading plant-based companies in North America, Asia and ultimately, the planet,” says Andrew D. Ive, Founder of Big Idea Ventures.

“Bühler and Big Idea Ventures will work together to build great companies responding to consumer demands for great tasting food that is good for them and good for the planet.”

“Providing safe, nutritious, pleasurable and affordable food to a population of 10 billion people by 2050 and doing that within the planetary boundaries is a formidable challenge,”

Ian Roberts, CTO at Bühler Group said that the partnership will also strengthen the company’s ambitions of “providing safe, nutritious, pleasurable and affordable food to a population of 10 billion people by 2050 and doing that within the planetary boundaries is a formidable challenge.”

Roberts remarks that that there is an urgent need for wide-scale collaboration in order to ensure deliver impactful and meaningful solution on the climate and nutrition challenges within the next decade.

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“Academics, start-ups, and established companies need to come together to innovate and find more sustainable ways to produce food,” he says.

“This is why we are partnering with Big Idea Ventures: to accelerate the journey for promising start-ups, to reinforce partnerships and start-up ecosystems in Singapore and the US, and to do this with a clear focus on creating a more sustainable food supply for the future.”

“We will be pleased to welcome Big Idea Ventures start-ups to benefit from our facilities and capabilities,” adds Roberts. “We are excited about this partnership and believe that we can advance our goals for a sustainable food system with Andrew and his team.” 

“This new partnership benefits from our global network of Food Application Centers across Europe, Asia, and the US,” added Johannes Wick, CEO Grains and Food at Bühler Group.

Johannes revealed that the company is set to open a new Food Application Center in Minneapolis, USA this June. Bühler is also set to open a joint innovation facility with Givaudan in Singapore later this year.

According to the company, the new Food Application Center in Minneapolis will provide a platform for developing new ways to transform peas, beans, corn, pulses, oats, ancient grains, and other crops into new food solutions such as flours, snacks, pasta, cereals, and a myriad of extruded products, including plant-based meat analogues.

Bühler added that the joint Givaudan Bühler innovation facility in Singapore will focus on sustainable protein-based products by blending the flavor and formulation know-how of Givaudan with the process know-how and technological capabilities of Bühler, to provide a “one-stop shop for development and first scale up of new products for market test.” 

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