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Precision fermentation disruption

Precision fermentation disruption

Precision fermentation is paving the way for animal-free dairy products, using synthetic milk to produce dairy alternatives cheaper, faster and with fewer inputs than conventional dairy.

In 2021, Eden Brew, an Australian start-up company launched their mission to take precision-fermented dairy to consumers. Their product is being advertised as a “ground-breaking new way to enjoy dairy products sustainably and nutritiously”.

The process of creating dairy products by precision fermentation includes technology to program micro-organisms to produce milk proteins, and combine them with yeast in the fermentation process. Researchers at the CSIRO state “Precision fermentation is an extension of fermentation, which has been pioneered by the dairy industry for many years. Fermentation is how cheese, yoghurt, beer and wine are produced. In this case, the fermentation is more precise. With this process, our researchers can produce the same casein and whey proteins found in cow’s milk.”

Eden Brew is backed by Norco, Australia’s oldest dairy cooperative together with venture capital firm, Main Sequence and CSIRO. This indicates that the Australian dairy industry is already predicting a major disruption due to the uptake of precision-fermented dairy. RethinkX analyst, Catherine Tubb says that the precision-fermentation model is unlikely to rely on consumer uptake, and instead will be driven by food manufacturers purchasing this cheaper product that can be produced faster, and with fewer inputs than conventional dairy. This business-to-business disruption does not rely on consumer, but rather food manufacturers purchasing this product.

RethinkX anticipates costs to fall below $10 per kilogram by 2025, then dropping to five times cheaper within five years, and 10 times cheaper by 2035. Ms Tubb predicts that traditional dairy production will be obsolete by 2035.

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Eden Brew


RethinkX Report: Rethinking Food and Agriculture 2020–2030