January 31, 2023
Each month, New Hope Network rounds up the must-know investments in the natural products industry. Through Nutrition Capital Network, New Hope Network editors follow investment news to see what financial moves could significantly influence the industry and identify trends with funding support. Check back each month to see the latest investments that caught our eye.
The new year started with a bang and some big new investments. As predicted by the trends from 2022, food technology is still going strong. Companies working on alternative protein sources were the most popular as demand for more sustainable food sources and healthy protein options continue to increase. In January, other health-focused startups, from nutraceuticals to tailored-meal services, made news. Read on to learn more about these investments.
Beneo sizzles a 14% stake in Grillido
Beneo recently announced that it is acquiring a 14% stake in meat replacement/alternative startup Grillido. The acquisition will give Beneo access to Grillido’s e-commerce platform for faster and direct access to consumer feedback. In addition, Beneo will use the data to faster develop ingredients and product solutions for the plant-based meat market.
New growth in food tech
Microbiome company BIOHM recently raised $7.5 million to accelerate research, product development and artificial intelligence capabilities. Middleland Capital’s VTC Ventures led the oversubscribed round with participation from Felton Group LLC, Jobs Ohio Growth Capital Fund, Aztec Capital Management LLC, Cleveland Life Science Advisors, Valley Growth Ventures LLC, JumpStart-UH (Healthcare Collaboration Fund) and more. The new funding will help BIOHM remain a leading microbiome innovation partner to food, beverage and dietary supplement companies.
Multus Biotechnology raises $9.5 million Series A Round
Multus Biotechnology, a U.K.-based cellular agriculture startup, recently raised $9.5 million in funding in a Series A Round led by Mandi Ventures with participation from SOSV, Big Idea Ventures, SynBioVen and Asahi Kasei Corp. The new financing will accelerate product development in advanced growth media formulations and food-grade raw materials. The Series A Round also raised capital to build a new production facility for food-safe growth formulations and cultivated meat ingredients.
ModifyHealth announces $10 million Series B Round.
ModifyHealth is a food-as-medicine platform that provides medically tailored meals. The latest funding round was led by RC Capital with participation from existing investor Nashville Capital Network. The new $10 million will accelerate growth and further expand offerings nationwide.
Solabia acquires majority stake in BioActor
French active ingredients maker Solabia has purchased a majority stake in nutraceutical ingredients firm BioActor. BioActor develops polyphenols extracted from fruits and plants for use in supplements. This new investment will expand Solabia’s production capabilities and support research and development.
Excitement for new sustainable protein ingredients startup
ICL Planet Startup Hub, an agrifood innovation and investment platform, invested €2.75 million in the startup Arkeon. Arkeon sustainably creates customizable protein ingredients by capturing greenhouse gas and converting it into the 20 proteinogenic amino acids vital to human nutrition. The alternative proteins are carbon negative and classified as clean-label functional ingredients. In addition, Arkeon will now have access to ICL’s premium research and development labs and production facilities.
Pronghorn says hello to Hella Cocktail Co.
Pronghorn, an incubator initiative to expand diversity in the alcohol industry, has announced its recent capital investment in Hella Cocktail Co. The capital also will provide Hella access to Pronghorn’s industry experts and consulting services to accelerate growth. Hella CEO Jomaree Pinkard will transition to Pronghorn’s new CEO and managing director.
From food waste to food containers
Singapore-based startup Alterpacks uses food waste—mainly spent grains, a byproduct of beer manufacturing—as raw materials to create food containers. These containers, which can be molded into different shapes, are microwavable, freezable and home compostable. The startup recently raised $1 million in pre-seed funding. The round was led by Plug and Play APAC and Seed Capital, with participation from Earth Venture Capital and Alice Foo. Alterpacks will use the new funding for commercialization and to move production to new markets such as Asia, Australia and Europe.
Raining funds for The Rainforest Company
German food tech company The Rainforest Company has raised nearly €36 million in capital. The rapidly growing healthy and sustainable foods D2C company creates vegan products based on the açai berry. In addition, The Rainforest Company works with farmers to develop sustainable agriculture practices and protect the rainforest. The latest round was led by Kaltroco with participation from Futury Capital, Corecam and Green Generation Fund.
No Meat Factory raises $42 million
Plant-based alternative protein manufacturer No Meat Factory recently closed a Series B round led by Tengelmann Growth Partners with participation from existing investor Emil Capital Partners. The new $42 million funding will be used to expand production and manufacturing capacity across North America and into the global market. The company also plans to use its new BRC-certified facilities in British Columbia, Canada, to produce products for brand partners.
New functional tea brand raises $6.7 million
The Ryl Company is launching a line of functional ready-to-drink canned teas across the Northeast in select Wegmans, Whole Foods Markets and Wakefern stores. The launch comes after raising $6.7 million in funding. The funds will be used for new product development. The brand is launching with four flavors to start and plans to be sold in Sprouts Farmers Markets nationwide by March.
Hometown Food Company acquires Birch Benders
Hometown Food Company is expanding its portfolio of American baking brands with its acquisition of Birch Benders. Birch Benders creates keto, paleo and organic waffle/pancaking mixes and other baking products. Hometown Food Company is acquiring Birch Benders from Sovos Brands Inc., and the transaction terms were not disclo
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