Mycorena and Revo Foods receive €1.5 million in EU funding
The grant, funded by Vinnova and Eurostars, is allocated to the development of mycoprotein for 3D printing
Mycorena, in Sweden, and Revo Foods, in Austria, are venturing into a collaborative project to reinvent 3D printed food using customized mycoprotein for the first time. The pair first announced their collaboration in early October 2022, and have now received noteworthy funding from the EU to further develop the project. The grant is allocated to the development of new technologies and processes to produce mycoprotein optimized for 3D printing. The project’s purpose is to drive the commercialization of the first-of-its-kind whole-cut seafood option in the alternative protein space.
Mycorena and Revo Foods were chosen for the highly competitive EU grant and have received a €1.5 million grant to pursue the project. The funding partners are Vinnova and Eurostars – the largest international funding program aiming to enable collaborative R&D projects across international borders in the EU. The funding follows the ‘Farm to Fork’ initiative by the EU, which focuses on innovation and sustainability in the food industry. With nearly 900 applications for the sought-after grant, the award is a testament to the importance of bringing innovative mycoprotein solutions to the market.
Despite its great potential, mycoprotein has never been optimized for application in 3D printing. The companies will be the first to develop a customized mycoprotein and produce 3D printed whole cuts. One of the main advantages of mycoprotein is its inherent fibrous structure that perfectly mimics soft fish fibres’ texture, which is difficult to achieve with current plant-protein processing techniques. The project has the potential to revolutionize the whole-cut market using the new optimized mycoprotein. Printing materials with long fibers are generally complex, as they tend to entangle during the printing process, but could result in next-level products if executed correctly.
Mycorena is applying its expertise in fungi technology to tailor-make the material for commercial production. The company has developed a process to treat the protein to tailor the structural properties and reduce the risk of entanglement in the printing process – optimizing the mycoprotein’s suitability for 3D printing. Mycorena has applied for a patent for the unique process.
“At Mycorena, we are constantly striving to be and do better. Therefore, it is a natural part of our process to keep improving our technology to suit the needs of the next generation of food products. Getting this recognition from an attractive and competitive initiative like Eurostars further emphasizes that the technology we are developing is an important part of creating a sustainable food system,” said Kristina Karlsson, R&D Manager at Mycorena.
Revo Foods has already revolutionized the world of 3D printing with its alternatives to salmon and tuna, which are currently sold in over 20 countries. Revo Foods’ ambition is to offer the best plant-based seafood on the market, and the company is now investigating the potential of mycoprotein to expand its product range beyond the plant-based segment.
“We are really happy for the opportunity to explore the exciting new ingredient of mycoprotein in our production process. Mycorena is a leading company in this space. Together with our new process technology for whole-cut alternatives, we believe we can bring seafood alternatives and additive food manufacturing to the next level,” said Niccolo Galizzi, Head of Product Development at Revo Foods.
The untapped potential of mycoprotein could change the landscape of 3D printing. The meat-like properties of fungi provide seemingly endless opportunities in 3D printing, and the funding allocated to the project will enable the partners to develop innovative products to drive the market. Mycorena and Revo Foods will soon test the material on a larger scale.