The European Commission has granted Novel Food status to FermentIQ MLL and PTP, two of MycoTechnology’s functional natural plant protein ingredients. FermentIQ ingredients are produced using a mycelial fermentation platform that improves the sensory, functional, and nutritional attributes of plant protein. The authorisation follows a positive opinion issued by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which said it considered FermentIQ pea and rice protein fermented by shiitake mushroom mycelia to be safe for use in a wide range of food and beverage categories.
With Novel Food authorisation secured, USA-based MycoTechnology is set to accelerate its expansion into Europe. It has hired its first European sales representatives, based in Germany and the Netherlands, and has recently announced a partnership with Brenntag for distribution in the region. The company’s European expansion will be underpinned by its recent Series E fundraise, which generated $85m to fuel growth and proliferation of its technology to address the global need for healthier, more delicious food.
Welcoming the news, Alan Hahn, MycoTechnology CEO, commented: “Authorisation means we can now offer food and beverage manufacturers access to our cutting-edge plant protein in Europe for the first time. FermentIQ is a transformative, game-changing plant protein with multiple application and nutritional advantages over other plant protein ingredients. It enables brands to overcome the technical and taste barriers associated with other plant proteins, providing consumers with a compelling reason to switch.”
The addition of sales and distribution capabilities in Europe means that MycoTechnology’s product portfolio — comprising FermentIQ plant proteins and ClearIQ flavour clarifiers — will be available globally, with sales networks already in place in North America, Latin America, and Asia.
Hahn added: “Harnessing the power of mushroom mycelia to produce high quality plant protein is perfectly aligned with both consumer expectations and the EU’s commitment to sustainability and food security. It’s little surprise, then, that we are already in conversations with leading food industry players in Europe to formulate and commercialise products containing FermentIQ plant protein.”
FermentIQ is a pea and rice protein blend fermented by mushroom mycelia to deliver significant performance and nutrition. MycoTechnology’s proprietary process deodorises and de-flavours the protein, so that it offers a more neutral solution with enhanced functionality in a range of applications. FermentIQ is available in three formats. The core offering (PTP) offers improved solubility and mouthfeel in protein beverages, a milled offering (MLL) delivers nutrition, taste and mouthfeel profiles that make it ideal for dairy alternatives, and the texturised offering (TXP) provides a springy and juicy texture in meat analogues.
FermentIQ MLL and PTP both have a Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score (PDCAAS) of 1 for individuals aged three and older, signifying that their protein content is of the highest nutritional quality. FermentIQ also offers reduced anti-nutrients and improved digestibility, allowing 99.9% of protein consumed to be digested. A recent study found that MycoTechnology’s fermentation process improves protein quality by more than 20% for children aged 3 and above, adolescents, and adults, based on the Digestible Indispensable Amino Acid Score (DIAAS). As a result, FermentIQ protein ingredients offer a nutritional value competitive with animal and soy proteins.