Australian-Californian animal-free dairy startup Change Foods has secured $12 million in a seed extension fundraising round, bringing the company’s total company seed funding to more than $15.3 million. This represents a first for the precision fermentation sector and will support continued R&D ahead of commercial launch. The oversubscribed was led by Route 66 Ventures. Upfield, Orkla and Blue Horizon Ventures participated.
Hong Kong-based JIA Ventures, operator of chef-led restaurant group JIA, also joined the round, lending extra credibility to Change Foods’ technology. The investor has previously passed on alt protein and plant-based opportunities due to products not tasting good enough, Change Foods told Green Queen.
In addition to new funding, Change Foods has announced two strategic collaborations with Big Food players Upfield and Sigma. The former is the world’s largest plant-based food manufacturer, owning multiple brands including Violife. Sigma is a high-presence dairy foods leader with European, U.S. and Latin American dominance. Change Foods’ hopes these two collaborations will enable them to bring its precision fermentation dairy products to market with accelerated timelines and built-in global scalability from the get-go.