Agronomics Leads Clean Food Group’s Seed Financing of £1.65 million
1st August 2022
(“Agronomics” or the “Company”)
Agronomics Leads Clean Food Group’s Seed Financing of £1.65 million
Agronomics, the leading listed company focused on the field of cellular agriculture, is pleased to announce it has led Clean Food Group Limited’s (“Clean Food Group”) seed financing with a £577,500 investment, subscribing for 5,775,000 Ordinary Shares at 10 pence per share (the “Subscription”). Clean Food Group is a UK-based cellular agriculture company focused on the commercialisation of palm oil by fermentation. The Subscription will be made using cash from the Company’s own resources. Also joining the round is AIM traded SEED Innovations Limited (of which Jim Mellon, executive director of Agronomics, has a 6.95% holding).
Clean Food Group was co-founded by CEO Alex Neves and Co-Chairman Ed McDermott in 2021, with the goal of becoming a leading independent UK cultivated food ingredients business. Ed McDermott founded EMMAC Life Sciences Limited, a European medicinal cannabis business which was scaled and sold to Curaleaf Holdings Limited (CuraLeaf) for US$ 345 million in April 2021. Alex Neves was Head of EMMAC’s Consumer Division and played a key role in the company’s success.
In March 2022, Agronomics subscribed for 32,300,000 Ordinary Shares at 1p per share in Clean Food Group’s founder’s round for a total consideration of £0.323 million which will, subject to audit and based on the price per share of the latest Subscription, be carried at £3.23 million, representing a multiple on invested capital of 10. Following the close of the seed financing, the Company will hold a total of 38,075,000 ordinary shares with an equity stake of 35.03% and an aggregate value of £3,807,500. Agronomics will have the right to a board seat of Clean Food Group and Jim Mellon, an Agronomics’ director, will be appointed as non-executive Co-Chairman.
Clean Food Group recently acquired the intellectual property from the University of Bath for a technology platform that produces a bio-equivalent palm oil alternative using microbial fermentation and has secured a two-year collaboration with the University to scale the technology and bring its palm oil alternative to market. Additionally, the proprietary technology platform also produces natural 2-phenylethanol as a by-product, which is used worldwide as a rose fragrance and flavour and will also be commercialised.
The technology has been developed over the last eight years by Professor Chris Chuck and his team at the University of Bath. Professor Chris Chuck joined Clean Food Group as a technical advisor and leads a team of scientists at a dedicated Clean Food Group laboratory and Pilot Plant at the University of Bath.
Clean Food Group is currently identifying partners to work with and intends to submit a novel foods dossier for market approval of its palm oil alternative product to the European Food Standards Agency and UK Food Standards Agency in 2022.
The global palm oil market reached a value of US$ 50.6 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach US$ 65.5 billion by 2027. However, palm oil has been, and continues to be, a major driver of deforestation of some of the world’s most biodiverse forests, destroying the habitat of already endangered species like the orangutan, pygmy elephant and Sumatran rhino. This forest loss coupled with conversion of carbon rich peat soils are generating millions of tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and contributing to climate change. There also remains the issues of exploitation of workers and child labour.
Jim Mellon, executive director of Agronomics commented:-
“We are thrilled to be supporting Clean Food Group and broadening our portfolio into sustainable bio-equivalent palm oil. This is an important and exciting development, and this latest investment will help Clean Food Group to achieve R&D milestones and prepare regulatory dossiers for approval. The technology has huge scale potential and we look forward to being part of the company’s next stage of growth.”
Alex Neves, co-founder and CEO of Clean Food Group added:-
“We are pleased to have seen such significant demand for our seed financing round and are particularly excited to be working with Agronomics, widely recognised as a pioneer of the cellular agriculture investment community, as our cornerstone investor. We are committed to establishing ourselves as a leading UK cultivated food ingredients business, starting with the commercialisation of our bio-equivalent palm oil alternative, a product that has already received significant market interest. With this funding round now successfully completed, we are not only well capitalised to complete the next stage of our corporate development, but are also well placed to take the next step on the path to bringing our palm oil alternative, an ingredient with the potential to solve substantial environmental, food security, health and working environment challenges within the incumbent palm oil supply chain, to market.”
This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of the Market Abuse Regulation (EU) No. 596/2014, as it forms part of UK Domestic Law by virtue of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018. Upon the publication of this announcement, this inside information is now considered to be in the public domain.
The Clean Food Group is a UK based food-tech business focused on bringing sustainable, cultivated foods to market, initially, in the UK and Europe.
Clean Food Group operates within the fast-developing cultivated food industry, a market with significant opportunities driven by global environmental, health and animal welfare concerns about existing and future consumption levels of animal protein and other foods such as palm oil.
Clean Food Group sets itself apart through its strong technical, consumer and retail expertise, strong financial backing, and its ability to navigate the complex regulatory environment for new food products.
Clean Food Group is founded by a team with key experience in growing bio-tech, food industry and retail businesses supported by established venture capital and family office investors with a track record supporting highly successful growth companies in highly regulated industries.
Agronomics is a leading listed alternative proteins company with a focus on cellular agriculture and cultivated meat. The Company has established a portfolio of 23 companies at the pre-seed to Series C stage in this rapidly advancing sector. It seeks to secure minority stakes in companies owning technologies with defensible intellectual property that offer new ways of producing food and materials with a focus on products historically derived from animals. These technologies are driving a major disruption in agriculture, offering solutions to improve sustainability, as well as addressing human health, animal welfare and environmental damage. This disruption will decouple supply chains from the environment and animals, as well as being fundamental to feeding the world’s expanding population. A full list of Agronomics’ portfolio companies is available at https://agronomics.im/.
About Cellular Agriculture
Cellular Agriculture is the production of agriculture products directly from cells, as opposed to raising an animal for slaughter, or growing crops. This encompasses cell culture to produce cultivated meat and materials, and fermentation processes that harness a combination of molecular biology, synthetic biology, tissue engineering and biotechnology to massively simplify production methods in a sustainable manner.
Over the coming decades, the source of the world’s food supply traditionally derived from conventional agriculture is going to change dramatically. We have already witnessed the first wave of this shift with the consumer adoption of plant-based alternative proteins but today, we are on the cusp of an even bigger wave of change. This is being facilitated by advances in cellular agriculture. This change is necessary, given scientists claims that if we maintain existing animal protein consumption patterns, then we will not meet the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting warming to 1.5℃’
AT Kearney, a global consultancy firm, projects that cultivated meat’s market share will reach 35% by 2040. This combined with the Good Food Institute’s estimate that a US $1.8 trillion investment will be required in order to produce just 10% of the world’s protein using this technology, means that we are on the cusp of a multi-decade flow of capital to build out manufacturing facilities. Funding in the field of cellular agriculture is accelerating, however still less than US$ 4 billion has been invested worldwide since the industry’s inception in 2016.
For further information please contact:
|Agronomics Limited||Beaumont Cornish Limited||Canaccord Genuity Limited||Cenkos Securities Plc||Peterhouse Capital Limited||TB Cardew|
|The Company||Nomad||Joint Broker||Joint Broker||Joint Broker||Public Relations|
|Richard Reed Denham Eke||Roland Cornish James Biddle||Andrew Potts Harry Rees Alex Aylen (Head of Equities)||Giles Balleny Max Gould Michael Johnson||Lucy Williams Charles Goodfellow||Ed Orlebar Alistair Walker|
|+44 (0) 1624 639396 email@example.com||+44 (0) 207 628 3396||+44 (0) 207 523 8000||+44 (0) 207 397 8900||+44 (0) 207 469 0936||+44 (0) 20 7930 0777 +44 (0) 7738 724 630 firstname.lastname@example.org|
This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact email@example.com or visit www.rns.com.