New venture selects Tennessee site to produce novel protein

Site will house one of largest gas fermentation facilities to produce sustainable fish feed ingredient.

Cargill Inc. and Calysta Inc., along with several third-party institutions, plan to invest in the creation of the world’s largest gas fermentation facility in Memphis, Tenn., to produce Calysta’s FeedKind protein, a family of sustainable, traceable, nutritional ingredients for fish, livestock and pets.

The new venture plans to build and operate this facility on Cargill’s 69-acre property on President’s Island, where Cargill currently produces corn oil and stores and distributes sweetener products. The facility is expected to come on line in late 2018, producing up to 20,000 metric tons per year of FeedKind protein initially and expanding to up to 200,000 mt per year when operating at full capacity.

Upon completion of the plant, the new venture expects to hire 75 permanent employees and expand to 160 people when the plant is fully ramped up.

“Cargill has been a part of the Memphis community for 40 years. With the strong support of the state of Tennessee, Shelby County and city of Memphis, we are pleased that the venture chose to locate the facility in Memphis,” said Cargill global vice president of bioindustrial Brian Silvey. “The venture’s building of a state-of-the-art fermentation facility on the existing Cargill Memphis site reaffirms our commitment to the community and state and our pledge to strategically invest in aquaculture as an ever-increasingly important source of protein.”

FeedKind protein is a proprietary, new feed ingredient initially targeted as an alternative to fish meal for the aquaculture industry. It is produced using the world’s only commercially validated gas fermentation process. Cargill and Calysta will be jointly marketing FeedKind protein globally.

“With a proven and proprietary fermentation platform, Calysta is introducing a scalable and disruptive protein source critical to meeting the needs of a growing global population. Partnering with Cargill -- a leader in fermentation and protein production -- and others to invest in the establishment of the venture as the first U.S. manufacturing plant to commercially produce FeedKind protein significantly accelerates FeedKind protein’s launch in the aquaculture industry at commercial scale. This venture is an important first step to deploying this technology globally,” Calysta president and chief executive officer Dr. Alan Shaw said.

In September 2016, Calysta opened a research and development and market introduction facility in the U.K. to produce samples of FeedKind protein that can be used in aquaculture, livestock and pet markets worldwide.

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