Finnish foodtech company, Solar Foods, granted Singaporean approval for bioprocessed protein

The regulatory approval for the novel food, given by the Singapore Food Agency (SFA), allows for the sale of food products containing Solein in Singapore. Photo: Solar Foods

Embassy of Finland in Singapore celebrated Singapore Food Agency (SFA) granting Finnish foodtech company, Solar Foods, a novel food regulatory approval for its product Solein, allowing import, manufacturing and sale of food products containing Solein in Singapore.

In a press release, Solar Foods said the approval was a major milestone for both Solar Foods and global food supply in general.

Solein is a microbial protein-rich powder that contains essential amino acids. It can be used to replace existing proteins in a variety of foods, for example in alternative dairy and meat, different snacks and beverages, noodles and pasta, or breads and spreads. Solein is produced through a bioprocess in which microbes are fed with gases, such as carbon dioxide, hydrogen, and oxygen, and small amounts of nutrients. The bioprocess resembles winemaking, in which carbon dioxide and hydrogen replacing sugar as the source of carbon and energy, respectively.

Solein is 65-70% protein, 5-8% fat, 10-15% dietary fibres and 3-5% mineral nutrients. The macronutrient composition of Solein cells is very similar to that of dried soy or algae. Disconnected from the limitations of traditional agriculture along with  climate and weather, Solein has the potential of contributing to the food revolution and general transparency of food production.

Solar Foods CEO, Pasi Vainikka, expressed it was a huge day for the company.

– The food revolution we have been working towards for years has taken a major step forward and we are highly excited about the prospect of bringing Solein to the market in Singapore. We have tested Solein rigorously in a wide variety of foods over recent years. However, the impact of any food product, no matter how innovative, is truly realised only once it can be put on the plates of consumers, said Vianikka.

Solar Food’s first production facility is set to open in Finland in 2024 and the company plans to seek approval for Solein production in the United States while authorization has already been sought in UK and European markets.


About Jeannette Hinrup

Jeannette Sophie Hinrup is a Danish environmental geographer traveling South East Asia while writing for ScandAsia.

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