A mulit-million pound fish food factory with the potential to transform the salmon farming industry has opened on Teesside.
USA-based Calysta chose Teesside as the base for its state-of-the-art facility to manufacture sample quantities of FeedKind® protein, a proprietary, competitively priced new fish and animal feed ingredient targeted at replacing fishmeal.
Calysta has teamed up with Wilton’s CPI to develop a new fish food to replace fishmeal, with around 40 new jobs in the pipeline – and more in the supply chain.
Leading retailers, producers, investors and government representatives from around the globe, including Redcar MP Anna Turley, gathered to mark the opening.
Calysta president and CEO Alan Shaw (pictured) said: “The opening of this plant represents the end of a decade of development and heralds a new era in the race to sustainably feed the world’s growing population.
“By 2050 the global population is expected to rise from 7.4 billion today to 9.6 billion and require 70 per cent more protein than is currently available.
“Calysta can help meet this need by supplying the aquaculture industry with a naturally produced, sustainable and traceable feed alternative to replace conventional ingredients based on fishmeal and soya.
“Our first focus is the salmon farming industry and we were very pleased to welcome representatives from a number of key producers today.
“FeedKind protein has been shown to improve growth rates, nitrogen retention and gut health in Atlantic salmon.”
Produced using the world’s only commercially validated gas fermentation process, FeedKind protein is a natural, traceable and safe non-animal source of protein.
FeedKind protein is approved for sale and use in many animal feeds in the EU and has been tested on multiple fish species, including salmon. The facility will become fully operational in Q4 2016.
Earlier this year Calysta partnered with Cargill for production of FeedKind protein in North America and entered into a global joint marketing agreement. A world scale plant is expected to open in the United States by 2018.
The plant is supported by a conditional Exceptional Regional Growth Fund (EGRF) award and represents a total potential investment of £30 million. When completed, the facility is expected to provide employment for 35 to 40 people.
Anna Turley MP said: “As well as generating investment and employment in Teesside, this facility puts the UK at the forefront of the race to address the world’s growing protein demand with novel technologies.
“I am really pleased that Calysta has chosen to base their biotech project here and look forward to seeing the facility develop further.”
Based in Menlo Park, California and established in 2011, Calysta brings together experts in biotechnology and product innovation to focus on commercialising disruptive, sustainable technologies.
In February 2016 Calysta announced $30 million in Series C funding including an investment from Cargill. To date, the company has raised approximately $50M.