Foodtech startup Clean Food Group is on a mission to develop a more sustainable alternative to palm oil. The UK-based team has now ended its seed round, acquired the required intellectual property, and embarked on new partnerships to scale up the development of its pioneering product.
Palm oil is a massive market. It’s hidden in the ingredients list in many (if not most) of the foods consumed on a daily basis around the world. However, palm oil is responsible for majorly devastating environmental and societal impacts.
The global palm oil market is expected to reach about €65 billion by 2027, but it’s driving deforestation in some of the world’s most diverse habitats, it’s emitting millions of tonnes of greenhouse gases, and, the exploitation of workers and child labour has been a significant concern. Knowledge about the harmful impacts of palm oil production is widespread, but, alternatives have been few and far between, and so the problem has continued. Until now.
Clean Food Group is developing an alternative – aiming to be part of the solution to the palm oil crisis.
Based in the UK, Clean Food Group (CFG) are developing a viable yeast-based alternative to palm oil. The startup reports that their lab-grown cellular-based alternative could help reduce the detrimental impact of a range of palm-based ingredients – reportedly found in 50% of all packaged products on supermarket shelves.
The startup began this year by acquiring the relevant intellectual property from the University of Bath where the technology has been developed over the last eight years by Professor Chris Chuck and his team. Prior to the acquisition, in excess of €5 million had been spent developing the technology to the stage where it is ready for scale-up and commercialisation.