Tropic Biosciences UK Limited Raise US$ 35 Million
RNS Number : 8804R
8 July 2022
(“Agronomics” or the “Company”)
Investee Company Update: Tropic Biosciences UK Limited Raise US$ 35 Million
Agronomics Limited (AIM:ANIC), a leading listed company focused on cellular agriculture, is pleased to announce that portfolio company, Tropic Biosciences UK Limited (“Tropic Biosciences”), has successfully raised US$ 35 million in its latest funding round led by sustainable food system investor, Blue Horizon. Other investors participating in the Convertible Loan Note include DisruptAD, Bloom8 (formerly Rage Capital), Skyviews Life Science, Sucden Ventures and Tekfen Ventures. Agronomics first invested in March 2020 and the position will remain carried on the books at cost, being US$ 2,999,996.60.
Tropic Biosciences is a UK based gene-editing company developing high-performing commercial varieties of tropical crops promoting cultivation efficiencies, enhancing consumer health, and improving sustainable environmental practices. This is made possible through the use of its proprietary Gene Editing Induced Gene Silencing (“GEiGS”) technology – which allows minimal edits to specific non-coding genes of a host organism, resulting in improvements such as in crop performance and crop protection. In November 2021, they received confirmation from the United States Department of Agriculture Animal & Plant Inspection Service (“USDA-APHIS”) that its gene-edited potato product developed using GEiGS was exempt from regulation. This is a promising indicator that other products developed using this technology will also not face regulatory barriers to enter the US market.
Tropic Biosciences focuses on banana, coffee and rice crops – commanding a vast combined market of US$ 400 billion. Notably, they are developing commercial varieties of banana that are resistant to the Panama Disease (TR4) fungus. Panama Disease spreads rapidly and nearly all varieties of bananas, including the main commercial variety Cavendish, are susceptible. It is considered to be one of the greatest threats to banana production worldwide, and as of yet there remains no cure.
This latest round of funding will allow Tropic Biosciences to accelerate and expand its go-to-market plans.
For further information please contact:
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About Tropic Biosciences
Tropic Biosciences is one of the leading agricultural gene-editing companies globally, and focuses on the development and commercialization of high-performing varieties of tropical crops, namely coffee, bananas and rice. It employs over 120 industry-leading professionals and is headquartered at the renowned Norwich Research Park.
Agronomics is a leading listed alternative proteins company with a focus on cellular agriculture and cultivated meat. The Company has established a portfolio of 22 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.
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