Agritech firm Better Origin has announced that they raised €14.6 million ($15.8 Mn) in a Series A funding round, which was led by new investor Balderton Capital along with existing ones Fly Ventures and Metavallon VC.
Founded in 2019 with the aim to revitalise the global food supply chain, CEO Fotis Fotiadis and CSO Miha Pipan plans to create decentralised AI-powered insect mini-farms, which take local food waste from supermarkets and convert it into high-quality, sustainable animal feed. The company’s sustainable model plans to tackle rising carbon footprints and climate change with their endeavour.
Suranga Chandratillake, General Partner at Balderton Capital said, “Fotis, Miha and the Better Origin team are working to fundamentally change our broken food chain, for the benefit of everyone. Climate change, the pandemic, political tensions and our growing population have demonstrated time and again how fragile our current systems are.”
He also added that the company has shown how farming currently exacerbates the challenges faced and Better Origin presents a new approach that they believe can have a transformational effect on food and farming systems.
According to the company model, The AI-powered decentralised insect farms recreates the conditions found in nature where food is eaten by insects and upcycled into essential nutrients for other animals to grow. Using AI and automation, Better Origin aims to recreate the similar optimal environment for this cycle to flourish, producing black soldier fly larvae which can be fed to the farm’s animals.
CSO and founder Miha Pipa commented, “The food chain is fundamentally broken and it’s putting the future of our food security at risk. We’ve built a solution that aims to finally fix these flaws from the inside out. Insect larvae are nature’s mechanism to convert waste back into essential nutrients in the food chain. They act as the missing link between waste and food. We reduce waste and increase food production by bringing back this link. We believe our solution is the future of food production and the latest round of funding takes us a step closer to this future.”
“Beyond enabling us to scale up operations and expand our team, the deep understanding and expertise that Balderton brings makes it the perfect Series A partner. It was of vital importance when raising our Series A, as it was when we raised our Seed, to find partners that truly believe in our mission and ambition. We’re thrilled that Balderton, alongside Fly Ventures and Metavallon VC, are with us as we take this next stage for our company, for our partners and for our planet,” added CEO Fotis Fotiadis.