Bond Pet Foods, Inc., the Boulder-based company using biotechnology to make animal-free pet food, announces that it has completed its seed funding, totaling $1.2 million. Founded in 2017 by Rich Kelleman and Pernilla Audibert, Bond creates slaughter-free meat proteins for cats and dogs, based on the belief that it isn’t necessary to harm one animal to feed another.
Employing the same fermentation technology that is used to produce ingredients for cheese making or insulin for diabetics, Bond adjusts the process to instead harvest high-quality meat proteins like chicken, turkey, beef, pork and fish, but without the animal. In February of this year the company was selected by Nestle Purina as finalists for their 2019 innovation prize.
The Seed round is led by Lever VC, a venture capital fund specializing in alternative protein investments, with Agronomics, KBW Ventures, Plug and Play Ventures, Andante Asset Management and others participating.
“What makes us so excited about Bond Pet Foods is that it’s the first clean-meat company producing meat protein in a way that doesn’t require major technological breakthroughs to get to price parity with conventional meat,” said Nick Cooney, Founder and Managing Partner at Lever VC. “We don’t think there’s any other company out there with the potential to disrupt the $100 billion pet food market as much as Bond Pet Foods.”
This round of funding will be instrumental in driving the research and development needed to develop and scale Bond’s animal protein production and to debut its first consumer product early next year, a protein-packed dog treat bar made with a pure yeast protein. It also serves as an important first step in elevating the use of ingredients made through microbial fermentation in pet food, and educating the public about its merits.
In an interview with vegconomist last year, CEO Rich Kelleman said that pet food, “like people food, is moving towards a healthier, more humane, sustainable reality. We will be at the forefront of this pursuit in the pet category.”
Click here to read his insightful opinion piece about the pet food industry.