Change Foods Raises $15.3M in Record Seed Funding Round – vegconomist
- Change Foods raises $15.3 million to develop animal-free dairy protein.
American-Australian Society Change food raised $12 million in its seed extension funding round, bringing its total seed investment to $15.3 million. This sum is the largest increase ever for a precision fermentation company.
The round was led by Route 66 Ventures, with participation from Upfield, Blue Horizon, Sigma, British footballer Chris Smalling, and more. Additionally, Change Foods has signed strategic collaboration agreements with Upfield and Sigma.
Transforming the cheese industry
Upfield is the world’s largest producer of plant-based foods, with a focus on dairy alternatives, while Sigma is a global food company with over $6.7 billion in annual revenue. These collaborations will enable faster product development and scale, as well as increased distribution capabilities.
“Our mission is to transform the global cheese industry with new products that provide the indulgent taste and taste experience of traditional animal products, but without the ill effects of industrialized animal agriculture,” said David Bucca, founder and CEO of Change Foods. “Our flagship funding round and collaboration agreements demonstrate confidence in our ability to usher in game-changing animal-free cheese products. Industry partnerships are a critical part of our business model as we seek to leverage the scale and expertise of major industry players to rapidly expand production and take to market.
In pursuit of the “holy grail”
Change Foods is working on what it calls the “holy grail” of vegan food – real cheese without the cow. The company set out to achieve this by using precision fermentation technology to produce dairy protein casein.
Similar technology has been used since the 1990s to produce animal-free rennet for vegetarian cheeses. Perhaps that’s why Change’s oversubscribed initial funding round was backed by dairy industry investors, who recognized innovation as important to the future of the sector. The company expects an initial market launch late next year.
“Our technology has endless potential in the dairy space,” Change told vegconomist in an interview. “We are evaluating products like animal-free milk, yogurt and ice cream for our expansion opportunities.”