Australian precision fermentation company Cauldron (not UK Cauldron Foods), has raised AUD$10.5 million to develop, prove and commercialize new food, feed, and fiber ingredients for alt dairy, meat and biodegradable materials.
“Cauldron will act as a regional powerhouse for manufacturing to ensure Australia plays a role in the future of agriculture”
Founded in 2022 by precision fermentation specialist Michelle Stansfield and headquartered in Orange, New South Wales, Cauldron says the raise is one of the largest seed rounds in Australia for a female-founded company. Main Sequence, a deep tech venture capital firm founded by CSIRO, and Hong Kong’s Horizons Ventures, backed the biotech company.
“Humanity has spent thousands of years getting fermentation to work. With Cauldron’s revolutionary pharmaculture platform, we are supercharging that process and unlocking the next evolution in how we produce food, feed and fiber globally,” said Stansfield, the company’s CEO.
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The funds will enable the company to expand its existing pilot plant in Orange and build a portfolio of experts to exploit the potential of its technology that the company claims will “unlock new types of food, feed and fiber production and unlock a $700 billion global industry opportunity.” ”
The company also announced plans to build a network of precision fermentation facilities around regional Australia. This will leverage the country’s agricultural know-how and feedstock while diversifying and creating new local employment. It will be the largest network of precision fermentation facilities in the Asia-Pacific, Caldron said.
In the region, players such as biotech company Lom Bio are already leveraging networks of cauldrons to accelerate the production of microbial technologies for carbon capture and long-term storage. ULUU, an innovative Australian company that develops natural alternatives to plastic, is collaborating with Cauldron to accelerate production of its products, so they can enter the market and replace plastic in a variety of applications.
In January, the The Queensland Government announced Funding for Cauldron to conduct a feasibility study to bring a world-leading Future Foods BioHub to Mackay, North Queensland.
“Our technology, 35 years of expertise, combined with Australia’s unique infrastructure and abundance of natural resources, will help ensure companies in this space can get new products and ingredients to market faster at lower cost and risk,” he added.
According to Cauldron, its continuous hyper-fermentation technology is a breakthrough for the industry. It radically reduces commercial risk, producing ingredients five times more efficiently than conventional methods, helping precision fermentation companies scale and commercialize their new products faster, with much lower risk.
“Caldron will act as a regional powerhouse for manufacturing to ensure Australia plays a role in the future of agriculture and other industries,” said Principal Sequence Partner Phil Morley.