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HAVBRUK2-Stort program for havbruksforskning

Towards more sustainable feed: Scaling of cutting-edge CO2-to- microbial protein production [SCoFeed]

Alternative title: Mot bærekraftig for: Oppskalering av et banebrytende protein fra biogen CO2 fangst.

Awarded: NOK 22.9 mill.

Project Number:


Application Type:

Project Period:

2022 - 2025


Subject Fields:

Production of salmon in Norway is heavily connected to soy-driven deforestation in Brazil's Amazon rainforest.The Amazon is vital to the Earth's recycling of carbon storing tremendous amounts of this element. Much of the Amazon nears tipping point of switching from rainforest to savannah. What is even more alarming is that the production of protein for salmon feed should be significantly ramped up to accommodate the growth of aquaculture.The time to act is now. Gas2Feed is developing a process for production of protein fully independent of geographies, climate and weather conditions. The process is confirmed to have the lowest carbon footprint among all known protein sources. It makes use of biotechnology as as one of the pillars in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The exotic microbes grown in the bioreactor consume elements of water and air. So called knallgas bacteria grow on hydrogen, oxygen and CO2 as the main feedstocks. The resulting biomass is rich in protein and by composition is an excellent source of protein for salmon. The SCoFeed project is the design and construction of the large pilot plant at Risavika National Centre for Bioprocess and Fermentation. The subsequent R&D in the area of fermentation technology, use og gases, protein production, and field trials with salmon will be conducted together with our partners. The project aims in optimizing this futuristic process where the main feedstock will be derived only from natural resuorces such as wind, hydropower and biogenic CO2. In addition, trials to be conducted in the Centre will ensure nutritional chrateristics of the product, finilize design for the market launch and enable overall commecrialization of the technology.

Norwegian salmon production is highly depended on sourcing soy protein components from Brazil, emitting 6.7 kg CO2eq/kg soybean. There is a need for more sustainable protein sources for fish feed. Gas2Feed has initiated R&D of the world’s first carbon-neutral MP production concept that: a) produces protein (ref. as ‘CO2-to-MP’) for use in fish feed, using H2, O2, and CO2 as main inputs; b) enables CO2 fixation (i.e., reduces GHG emission) by using the most studied HOB Cupriavidus necator (C. necator), approved by EU as fish feed ingredient, as the main organism within the fermentation consortium, c) uses a patent pending proprietary reactor to enhance gas availability for microbes (i.e. lower OPEX); d) reuses nutrients through water recirculation, securing increased gas availability (i.e., lower CAPEX); e) couples state-of-the-art (SoA) technology for green H2 production from our strategic partner HydrogenPro; f) couples SoA technology for CO2 capture in water from our daughter company EcoFishCircle and CO2 capture in air from our strategic partner Carbon Removal AS. Gas2Feed AS has achieved Proof of Concept (TRL3) during 2021 and developed a 50L semi-pilot reactor (TRL4) in Q1-Q3 2022. In this project (Q2 2022 – Q1 2025), we will proof the scalability of our process by a) developing a 1500L pilot reactor, b) upscale CO2-to-MP fermentation process, and c) improve downstream processes (TRL 5). Further, we will prove the quality and market introduction of CO2-to-MP in fish feed through field trials with our pilot customer (TRL 6). Finally, we will identify technical and operational requirements for further scale-up and design a commercial-scale CO2-to-MP fermentation plant with capacity to produce 100,000 tonnes/year CO2-to-MP (TRL 7). All these features will enable a sustainable production of fish feed from CO2 at a commercial scale without compromising on cost-efficiency (10600 NOK/t protein) or product quality (>80% protein content, >85% protein digestibility).

Funding scheme:

HAVBRUK2-Stort program for havbruksforskning