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Recycling industrial CO2 into cost-competitive protein for high-value, sustainable animal feed


Animal feed producers are looking for alternative proteins because protein from conventional sources such as soy production and fishmeal face big sustainability issues, reflected in overfishing and deforestation. Deep Branch has developed a sustainable, highly scalable gas fermentation technology, that takes large volumes of CO2 from industrial emissions and transforms them into Proton™, a Single Cell Protein (SCP) optimised for animal nutrition. Proton™ has the potential for significant and, in the long-term, complete replacement of soy and fishmeal. Proton™ can be tailored to meet the precise requirements of animal feed companies and produced at scale in a sustainable and cost-competitive manner. Deep Branch has successfully tested the technology in a containerised, mobile unit at an industrial site and demonstrated nutritional viability. The company's initial focus will be on the €44bn aquaculture feed markets, with the €100bn+ monogastric market to follow. Within five years, Deep Branch aims to have full commercial-scale technology co-located with a CO2 emitting industrial partner, producing >50,000 tonnes of SCP per year. Feed producers have expressed their interest in purchasing this product once available in commercial volume; the company has already started co-developing feed recipes based on Proton™ and has LOIs and trial partner agreements from two major feed producers. At the other end of the value chain, the technology will offer large carbon emitters a new way to valorise their CO2. Once off-take has been secured and the production process and product quality validated, Deep Branch will build the first full-scale production facility, legally structured in a joint venture with a carbon-intensive industrial company. The objectives of the project are to build a Pilot Plant capable of producing >200 kg Proton™ per month, to fully validate the nutritional viability of Proton™, to complete the design for a demo plant and to secure necessary IP protection.

Field of science

  • /social sciences/economics and business/economics/sustainable economy
  • /social sciences/economics and business/business and management/commerce
  • /agricultural sciences/animal and dairy science/animal husbandry/animal feed

Call for proposal

See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

SME-2b - SME Instrument (grant only and blended finance)


Regent House 316 Beulah Hill
SE19 3HF London
United Kingdom
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
EU contribution
€ 2 490 820,50