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The growing world population needs more feed, food and energy. Therefore, it is necessary to eliminate inefficiencies in raw materials usage and closing loops. Dutch biotech startup Grassa aims to play a significant role in this circular economy by refining grass and vegetable waste streams. They believe that by separating components, animals can be fed more precisely and efficiently. As a result, farmers produce more animal protein with less input and with less mineral excess in the manure.
Now recently, the Limburg-based startup has raised € 2 million in a series A financing round led by Brightlands Venture Partners. Co-investors are LIOF, compound feed company Fransen Gerrits and current shareholders. With the funding, Grassa will further scale up its innovative biorefinery process and commercialise the product output. In addition, the company established a strategic partnership with compound feed company Fransen Gerrits for market introduction of selected products.
Grassa, founded in 2014, has developed a new, efficient biorefinery technology to process grass and vegetable waste. The process results in four products: roughage cattle feed, protein concentrate, fructooligosaccharides (a prebiotic) and mineral concentrate. The first three products will be used in animal feed. The fourth product is a plant-based organic fertiliser. All these products are non-GMO, fully natural and from local sources.
How will the funding be used?
With the funding, Grassa will further scale up its innovative biorefinery process and commercialise the product output. The partnering with compound feed company Fransen Gerrits will support Grassa in the introduction of products into the market of feed for dairy, pigs and rabbits that Fransen Gerrits is active in.
“The partnerships with Fransen Gerrits, Brightlands Venture Partners and LIOF will further enable us to realise our plans and accelerate our growth. As an industrial shareholder Fransen Gerrits will enhance the exposure of our products in the compound feed market”, says Peter van Paridon, CEO of Grassa. “We especially look forward to co-develop and execute our market development strategy in selected animal feed applications with Fransen Gerrits as well as to roll out our products to other players in the compound feed industry.”
“The Grassa proposition has the potential to impact global food and feed challenges significantly. In the coming year, further technical and market validation will be crucial to bringing the company to the next level. We are confident that the support of Fransen Gerrits and the Brightlands ecosystem will add value for the success of Grassa” says Kim de Boer, Fund Manager of the Brightlands Agrifood Fund.
Tys van Elk, Director of LIOF: “With LIOF’s Limburg Business Development Fonds (LBDF) we granted a so-called ‘proof of concept’ loan in 2018 in order to facilitate Grassa’s final product development. This has been an important step in proving the added value of Grassa’s business concept and it has attracted new investors. It Is LIOF’s ambition to support innovative companies in Limburg in all stages of their development”.
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