Cultivated fish burger demonstration by Avant in Nov 2020
Singapore and Hong Kong – 20 September 2021 – Avant and A*STAR’s Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI) have inked a research collaboration to jointly advance the scale-up of Avant’s proprietary process to enable cost-effective, food-grade production of cultivated fish in Singapore and beyond.
The parties will establish a Joint Research Laboratory for Cultivated Fish Bioprocessing in Biopolis, Singapore where both parties will jointly develop and optimise solutions for scalable production of cultivated fish cells. These include the identification of key factors affecting the growth of cultivated fish cells, and the process design to improve scale up and production economics.
The joint facility will tap on BTI’s deep expertise in bioprocess research and development, including animal cell bioprocessing and multi-omics analytical sciences and technologies.
Avant is the first company in Asia to develop technologies for fish cell cultivation and has showcased multiple commercial products, including fish fillet and marine peptide. Avant is also the first in the world to make cultivated fish maw. Avant has expanded its operations to Singapore in mid-2021 as part of the company’s strategic development and commercialisation.
Avant will establish a Joint Research Laboratory with A*STAR in Biopolis, Singapore
Avant has hired a team of scientists and engineers for the joint research laboratory and is in the process of setting up their pilot production facility in Singapore by 2022. Singapore is the first nation in the world to approve the sale of cultivated meat. Avant expects their products to be subjected to the same regulations under the Singapore Food Agency’s novel food regulatory framework, which requires companies to seek pre-market assessment for novel food such as alternative protein products that do not have a history of being consumed as food.
Cultivated meat has gained worldwide interest as an emerging alternative food source that is potentially more sustainable in comparison to traditional livestock farming and constitutes part of the wider field of cellular agriculture and aquaculture.
Ms. Carrie Chan, Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Avant commented, “Building on the existing experiences of Avant’s in fish cell cultivation and A*STAR’s expertise in bioprocessing, the collaboration will accelerate breakthroughs in methods to optimise cell cultivation process for meat production. It will achieve process efficiency and cost reduction initially for fish cells. We expect to gain insights into methodologies that can potentially be applied in other cell types as well.”
“Cultivated seafood and meat is an excellent example of how the biomanufacturing sector can pivot to meet emerging needs. The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of staying adaptable and innovative. BTI is pleased to partner and collaborate with Avant to achieve this,” said Dr. Koh Boon Tong, Executive Director, Bioprocessing Technology Institute, A*STAR.
Avant is the first cultivated meat company in Greater China and the first cultivated fish company in Asia. Avant’s technology offers a system to produce nutritious, tasty fish and functional marine proteins directly from fish cells at economically viable costs. The group’s end-to-end technology platform also allows continuous new product development from scratch all the way to production. Avant aims to be a global leader in producing traceable and sustainably cultivated proteins in a fully contained environment for food, skincare, and functional applications. Founded in 2018, Avant now has presence in Singapore and Greater China. Avant has also been awarded Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and featured in Reuters, Forbes, The Telegraph, South China Morning Post, and CCTV. For more information, please visit www.avantmeats.com.
ABOUT THE BIOPROCESSING TECHNOLOGY INSTITUTE (BTI)
Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI) is a research institute under A*STAR. Established in 1990, BTI is positioned as Singapore’s pillar of research and development for the biomanufacturing sector. BTI’s core capabilities span across the bioprocessing value chain, largely comprising Product Innovation, Cell Line Development, Media Development, Downstream Processing, Process Development and Scale-up, and Analytical Science & Technologies. Through strategic partnerships and application-driven research, BTI seeks to create value and impact in product markets including biologics, cell and gene therapy, exosomes, vaccines, engineered tissues, process analytical technologies and cell culture systems. For more information on BTI, visit www.a-star.edu.sg/bti.
ABOUT THE AGENCY FOR SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND RESEARCH (A*STAR)
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is Singapore's lead public sector R&D agency. Through open innovation, we collaborate with our partners in both the public and private sectors to benefit the economy and society. As a Science and Technology Organisation, A*STAR bridges the gap between academia and industry. Our research creates economic growth and jobs for Singapore, and enhances lives by improving societal outcomes in healthcare, urban living, and sustainability. A*STAR plays a key role in nurturing scientific talent and leaders for the wider research community and industry. A*STAR’s R&D activities span biomedical sciences to physical sciences and engineering, with research entities primarily located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis. For ongoing news, visit www.a-star.edu.sg.