Hafnium And A*STAR To Commercialise Innovative Low-calorie Noodles Through An Exclusive License Agreement

ASTAR Low Calorie NoodleThe low-calorie noodle formulation developed by Professor Christiani Jeyakumar Henry and his team of scientists at A*STAR’s Singapore Institute of Food and Biotechnology Innovation.

SINGAPORE - Hafnium Ventures and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) have entered an exclusive license agreement, enabling the commercialisation of a low-calorie noodle formulation by NOBA, a spinoff from A*STAR’s Singapore Institute of Food and Biotechnology Innovation (SIFBI).

NOBA aims to provide healthy noodle formulations for local and overseas food manufacturers. The low-calorie noodles are made with plant-based ingredients, and are also high in dietary fibre, while preserving a similar taste and texture to the yellow noodles commonly consumed by Asians. This is the first in the pipeline of several healthy noodle formulations, and the innovation process and formulation was developed by Professor Christiani Jeyakumar Henry and his team of scientists at A*STAR’s SIFBI.

Mr Francis Tan, Partner and Executive Director at Hafnium commented, “This spinoff is a further development of Hafnium’s ‘lab-to-market’ partnership with A*STAR. It will be a great addition to our growing food-tech business as we build on our existing noodle manufacturing expertise with Tai Thong Noodle business in Singapore.” He added, “With health issues such as diabetes and obesity on the rise in Asia, it is important to provide healthier options in the market.”

“This low-calorie noodle is an example of how SIFBI is continuously building on our R&D capabilities and partnerships to create or improve healthier foods for the Asian consumer and palate. Given an increasing global demand for healthy foods, we see more opportunities to develop healthy and innovative food products, and contribute significantly to the food-tech landscape. We look forward to more public-private collaborations with our ecosystem partners to bring about better health outcomes for consumers,” said Dr Hazel Khoo, Executive Director, SIFBI.

The new spinoff will be led by Ms Joyce Chew (CEO – NOBA lead, Hafnium), who commented, “We are excited to work with Professor Jeya and his team to bring this innovative and healthy noodle to the market. We see a growing demand from noodle manufacturers both in Singapore and internationally for innovations like this to meet the shift in consumers’ appetite for healthier versions of traditional products”.

“Food innovations such as this low-calorie noodle formulation are a result of strong public-private partnerships across the R&D ecosystem to transfer A*STAR’s nutritional knowledge and technologies to the industry. As consumers are increasingly health conscious, the demand for healthier, innovative food products creates exciting opportunities for the food innovation ecosystem,” said Professor Tan Sze Wee, Assistant Chief Executive of A*STAR’s Enterprise Division.

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About Hafnium

Hafnium Hafaway is an investment and advisory firm founded in 2017 and focused on the specialty chemicals, natural materials, and Agri/food tech sectors. Its team is built around deal making, operational and science expertise. The firm operates on an integrated basis from bases in Singapore and Europe. Hafnium Ventures specialises in the identification and commercialisation of early-stage innovative technologies and products, bringing hands-on support to their development.

About 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.

About the Singapore Institute of Food and Biotechnology Innovation (SIFBI)

The Singapore Institute of Food and Biotechnology Innovation (SIFBI) is a research institute under the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). SIFBI drives innovation in food and biotechnology, advancing Singapore’s aim to be Asia’s food innovation hub. It supports Singapore’s “30 by 30” goal of boosting local produce capabilities and aims to satisfy the global market’s demand for more sustainably produced foods that are safe, healthy and enjoyed for their sensorial attributes. SIFBI brings together end-to-end research capabilities encompassing biotechnology (discovery of producing strains, genetic engineering, biotransformation), nutrition, food process engineering and cutting-edge analytics under one roof. It collaborates with a wide range of industry partners as well as local and international universities to undertake research in alternative foods and the circular bioeconomy. The institute also drives the development of high value-added ingredients, future foods and new food systems to deliver value in organoleptic qualities and nutrition in a sustainable manner.