The construction of a large pilot facilty for insect production will be built during the year in close cooperation with 100-year-old industrial company Denofa.
The goal is an annual production of 50,000 tonnes of insect larvae by 2025. In addition, the company is working on several alternative marine protein sources. The company Pronofa will be Norway’s largest industrial investment in new proteins for feed production to date.
“This will be Norway’s largest investment in sustainable alternative proteins. The demand for more protein raw materials is high, and here we have both the history and the industrial expertise to scale-up more Norwegian sustainable protein raw materials in addition to the ones we already have today. Testing is underway, the site is ready and the building plans approved. We are going up on a large scale as quickly as possible,” said Hans Petter Olsen, CEO of Denofa and board member of Pronofa, in a press release.
The demand for local sources of protein for feed is high. The willingness to pay is also considerable, but production volumes are very limited. Pronofa wants to do something about that.
Behind the venture are a number of well-known investors including Convexa (Bjørge Gretland), Haakon Sæter, Canica and Macama. As part of the plan, the company is planning an IPO on Euronext Growth (Oslo Stock Exchange).
Starting with insects
Pronofa plans production on an industrial scale by 2022.
The company has already acquired the insect manufacturer Flying Feed, which has been researching and developing high-protein products for a long time.
“This is the circular economy in practice. From compost and bio-waste, we can produce a high-value product that the agriculture and aquaculture industry needs. Insect production globally is already large and about to skyrocket. It’s time we addressed this on an industrial scale,” said Olsen.
In addition to insect production, Pronofa is testing tunicates (small mollusks grown in sea plantations) and other marine protein sources. The goal is a broad protein portfolio.
Emerging from Denofa
The new company originates from Denofa, which has more than 100 years of history from oil and protein production in Fredrikstad, Eastern Norway. Denofa currently has an annual production of 420,000 tonnes, based on certified deforestation and GMO-free soy. Pronofa will build on Denofa’s industrial expertise, and cooperate closely with NMBU and others for the development of new products.
Pronofa is already in close dialogue with major agricultural players regarding feed development and feeding experiments.