Singapore-based investment company Temasek announced the launch of the Asia Sustainable Foods Platform, with a series of initiatives and partnerships designed to address the challenges of scaling up the production of alternative protein, and accelerating the commercialization of sustainable foods in Asia.
According to Temasek, the new platform aims to provide solutions and support to aspiring food-tech companies at every stage of their growth, from product development to commercial scale-up and adoption.
Yeoh Keat Chuan, Deputy Head, Enterprise Development Group at Temasek noted that the launch of the platform comes as over $1.5 trillion of investment will be required over the next decade in order to satisfy demand by consumers for healthier and more sustainable food options. Chuan added:
“Temasek has invested over US$8 billion in the global farm-to-fork value chain since 2013, and will continue to increase our investments in this space. Singapore has a significant role to play in the transformation of the agri-food sector. The Asia Sustainable Foods Platform aims to support local and regional businesses, innovate, scale up and commercialize.”
The new platform aims to provide solutions and support to food-tech companies as an enabler, operator, and investors. The company will provide R&D advisory and pilot-scale manufacturing facilities to support businesses accelerate product commercialization, as well as manufacturing capabilities and market insights into commercialization opportunities and a network of strategic connections, and it will allocate capital to promising food-tech start-ups.
Temasek also announced a series of partnerships complementing the launch of the new platform. These include A*STAR’s Singapore Institute of Food & Biotechnology Innovation (SIFBI) to invest in the Food Tech Innovation Centre (FTIC), a one-stop-shop where food-tech startups will have access to a food-grade pilot-scale facility, as well as a joint venture with German agri-food company CREMER to augment manufacturing capabilities for plant-based products.
The platform is also partnering with food processing and commodities company ADM, to form a joint venture that enables contract development and manufacturing services for microbial proteins produced via precision fermentation. ADM’s expertise will help enable smaller existing food tech companies to scale their fermentation innovations through to the pilot scale.
Joe Taets, President of ADM’s APAC business, said:
“We’ve talked to innovators, from startups to mature food providers, in Singapore and across APAC, and they have told us that they are eager and waiting for a partner that can provide support for food-grade precision fermentation technology.This first-of-its-kind joint venture in Singapore would meet that demand, and in doing so, will help further the development of the alternative protein industry in APAC.”
The new platform will be managed by CEO Mathys Boeren. Boeren has worked at a broad range of food and consumer companies including Unilever, Givaudan, Symrise and Kerry, and has advised start-ups in the sustainable food space on the alignment of product attributes and consumer preferences.
“Our key differentiating factor is our end-to-end enabler, operator, and investor capabilities that provide bespoke solutions and support to aspiring food-tech companies at every stage of their growth cycle. With our support to remove friction-to-adoption, companies can speed up their product development and pilot launch, as well as accelerate their commercial scale-up and go-to-market. In the end, it is our goal to delight consumers across Asia with tasty, fresh, traceable and sustainable food.”