Provectus Algae has commissioned its first 30,000 L demonstration plant to scale up Asparagopsis feed additives, marking a significant milestone for the company. Provectus Algae specializes in biomanufacturing using a carbon-capturing algae platform that can produce a variety of photosynthetic algae, including challenging macroalgae species. Its Precision Photosynthesis™ technology enables faster, consistent production of Asparagopsis, which has been shown to reduce enteric methane emissions in livestock by up to 95%.
As the second most prevalent anthropogenic greenhouse gas, methane presents a significant challenge for meeting climate targets, with ruminant methanogenesis being a key area of focus. Asparagopsis has been identified as a promising candidate for reducing livestock methane emissions, with research demonstrating its effectiveness. However, the algae’s slow growth and fluctuations in bioactive compound concentrations have presented obstacles for consistent, large-scale production at a price point below $1 per daily dose. Provectus Algae aims to overcome these barriers by leveraging its technology platform to produce the algae at scale and reduce production costs, with Precision Photosynthesis™ as a key enabler.
“Given that the agricultural industry typically operates on tight margins, the reality is that without offering a viable product at a low cost per dose, it will be difficult for farmers to adopt,” says Nusqe Spanton, founder and CEO of Provectus Algae. “We are now confident that our approach can deliver scalable production at less than 50 cents per dose and enable wider adoption of high-efficacy bio-based methane-reducing feed additives at costs competitive with existing synthetic alternatives.”
With Provectus Algae’s scalable, modular, closed production system, Asparagopsis can be grown anywhere in the world. Thus, production can occur near farms to minimize shipping costs, cut carbon footprints, and reduce efficacy loss from long-term storage and transportation.
With backing from key sustainability leaders like Hitachi Ventures and CJ Cheiljedang, Provectus sees livestock methane reduction as an ideal application for its technologies. Provectus is scaling the production of Asparagopsis from its 10 kL pilot operation to its newly commissioned 30 kL demonstration plant. The facility provides the capacity to produce >700 doses per day, which could ultimately remove over 4 metric tons of CO2 equivalent enteric emissions every day. Provectus Algae also plans to expand its demonstration plant to 160 kL and begin the construction of a new large-scale facility in 2024. In total, Provectus aims to supply doses to over 250,000 animals in 2025 and reduce enteric emissions by over 500,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalent annually.
“Provectus Algae’s Asaparagopis bioproduction approach is a major proof point in their photosynthetic bioprocess that can bring tangible impact to a global problem while transforming the sustainable biomanufacturing landscape,” says Pete Bastien, Partner at Hitachi Ventures.