Benson Hill, one of the fastest-growing food tech companies in the country, placed St. Louis, Mo., at the forefront of the future of food with the grand opening of its new state-of-the-art headquarters located in the 39 North Innovation District.
Benson Hill’s leading food innovation engine taps nature’s genetic diversity to fuel more healthy and sustainable options that benefit farmers, food companies of all kinds and, ultimately, consumers. The 160,000 sq. ft. headquarters will house a diverse and growing team with expertise in plant biology, agronomy, data analytics, machine learning and food science all focused on a single goal: empowering the innovation of better food and ingredient options from plant to plate.
“Today celebrates a milestone on our journey to move food forward,” Benson Hill chief executive officer Matt Crisp said. “While this new space provides our growing team with a safe, collaborative and inspiring workspace, it is also a visible symbol of our commitment to, and collaboration with, the broader innovative community working to advance food production. It reflects our ability to turn promise into progress and make more healthy, great-tasting and sustainable food choices accessible to everyone.”
The U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue attended the ribbon cutting for Benson Hill’s new headquarters, which was broadcast virtually to most Benson Hill team members and stakeholders due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’m intrigued by what Benson Hill is doing to link production and consumption in a transparent way. Consumers are becoming more sophisticated, and we must continue to develop more products that meet their needs for flavor as well as health to benefit the whole body. It was fascinating to see all the talent Benson Hill has convened here, and I’m excited to see where they will go from here,” Perdue said.
Benson Hill said it is already delivering on the promise. In March 2020, the company commercialized the first ultra-high-protein soybeans with the potential to replace soy protein concentrate, reducing costly and water-intensive processing steps to improve the sustainability of feed and food ingredients.
“We believe the inclusion of people and collision of ideas inspires the greatest form of innovation,” Benson Hill chief technology officer Jason Bull said. “Our new facility includes three stories dedicated to food science, data science and plant biology under one roof, allowing for seamless collaboration across functional teams. Our people bring bold thinking to solve complex problems, applying cutting-edge science to unlock nature’s diversity. Though we physically can’t be together today, our new building symbolizes the diverse perspectives and collaborative mindset that is core to who we are, and we’re excited to recognize this milestone.”
The new facility also reflects Benson Hill’s healthy, open and inclusive culture with features such as outside collaboration spaces, individual wellness and focus rooms, unisex restrooms, a gym and a healthy micro-mart. The company said its commitment to safety provides adaptable workspaces and easy-to-sanitize furnishings as well as a plasma ionization air filtration system that exceeds industry standards, eliminating airborne viruses for the entire building and providing 100% fresh air circulation in the labs as team members and visitors are able to return to the workplace over time.