February 22, 2022
Onego Bio Ltd has raised €10 million in seed funding to commercialize its breakthrough chicken-free protein production technology. The cellular farming startup is the latest spin-off from the VTT Technical Research Center of Finland and offers a vegan alternative to one of the world’s most commonly used animal proteins.
“They have the potential to produce bioalbumen on an industrial scale and at a price competitive with conventional egg production” – Jim Mellon, Agronomics
Finnish biotech company Onego Bio has developed Bioalbumen – an animal-free egg protein that uses commercially proven Trichoderma technology. The vegan egg white is made using a special precision fermentation process that creates identical egg white protein without the need for animals.
The startup announces the successful completion of a €10 million seed round involving venture capital funds including billionaire investor Jim Mellon’s Agronomics. The UK-based VC recently raised £25m for its expanding cell culture and cultured meat portfolio.
VTT Technical Research Center of Finland
Onego Bio’s bioalbumen technology was developed and researched at VTT, one of the leading European research institutions and owned by the Finnish state. The project was part of VTT LaunchPad, the science-based spin-off incubator, while other sustainable food solutions coming through the center include cell-cultured coffee and a partnership with Finnish dairy company Valio.
“We would like to thank VTT and our investors for supporting a technology that is part of a larger wave to change the way people look at alternative ways of producing food. It is time to develop this technology and start manufacturing our product as consumers are more open to trying products that are not of animal origin,” said Maija Itkonen, CEO of Onego Bio Ltd.
“With their technology, they have the potential to produce bioalbumen on an industrial scale and at a price competitive with conventional egg production, with significant environmental and animal welfare implications. Protein production has a huge overall addressable market and there is a need to employ precision fermentation tooling to meet demand in a sustainable manner,” added Jim Mellon, Executive Director of Agronomics.