Danone to Open Precision Fermentation Center ‘Biotech Open Platform’ in France with Strategic Players

French dairy giant Danone, engineered materials group Michelin, the US startup DMC Biotechnologies, and Crédit Agricole Centre France have partnered to create the Biotech Open Platform.

The new center will focus on precision fermentation, a technology pivotal for innovation in agri-food and materials with the potential to address the need for sustainable alternatives to animal and fossil-based products, according to the announcement.

“We have always been focused on investing in the future of food”

Located in the commune of Clermont-Ferrand in Auvergne, at the Parc Cataroux Center for Sustainable Materials, an innovation accelerator supported by Michelin, the platform aims to support the development of biosolutions on a larger scale.

Antoine de Saint-Affrique, CEO of Danone, said: “At Danone, we have always been focused on investing in the future of food, and this partnership is the next step in this journey. We look forward to working with our partners to develop cutting-edge fermentation technologies which will accelerate innovation, health benefits and decarbonization in the food industry.”

Danone has previously invested in Imangindairy, a precision fermentation company developing cow-free whey proteins and in Wilk, which develops cultivated milk fat.

French dairy giant Danone, along with Michelin, the US startup DMC Biotechnologies, and Crédit Agricole Centre France have partnered to create the Biotech Open Platform in Clermont-Ferrand.
Clermont-Ferrand commune © Antoine de Saint-Affrique

€16 million for the first phase

Initial biomanufacturing plans aim to scale up innovative products already tested in laboratories. To do so, over €16 million have been allocated for the first phase to install a demo-scale production line, including a fermenter and purification equipment, expected to be ready by 2025. More equipment and a second production line will follow shortly to support the scale-up of other companies.

“Kenny Erdoes, CEO of DMC Biotechnologies, said: “For us, as an American start-up, the development of the new Biotech Open Platform will enable us to accelerate the scale-up and commercialization of new products leveraging our transformative fermentation technology.”

The founders of the new bio platform emphasized the platform’s significance for innovation, attracting startups, regional development, and fostering collaborations for future biomanufacturing challenges to address sustainability.

© nordroden – stock.adobe.com

The industry of tomorrow

Frédéric Baraut, CEO of Crédit Agricole Centre France, commented: “Crédit Agricole Centre France is taking steps to support transformation and innovation in the region. By contributing to the Biotech Open Platform, we are helping to develop a new bio-based sector based in Clermont-Ferrand and also adding to the value and the attractiveness of the region.”

The Biotech Open Platform is also supported by several public and private institutions, including the University of Clermont Auvergne, the company Greentech, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), and Clermont Auvergne Métropole.

Florent Menegaux, president of the Michelin group, shared, “The Michelin group is pleased to announce the creation, with its partners, of the Biotech Open Platform – a unique tool that will enhance the development of bio-sourced materials, a key challenge for the industry of tomorrow.”

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