Cultivated Biosciences Raises $5 Million for Yeast-Derived Cream and 2025 Market Launch

Swiss biotech Cultivated Biosciences announces it has raised $5 million in a seed round to accelerate the development of its yeast-derived cream and prepare for a market debut.

After successfully testing its application in dairy-free coffee creamers, milk, and ice cream products, the company says it is now focusing on scaling up production and building collaborations to introduce the ingredient in consumer products. 

Pending regulatory approval for consumption, the company plans to introduce its cream to the US market in 2025 and the European market in 2026.

Dutch VC Navus Ventures led the investment round with participation from previous investors Founderful, HackCapital, and Lukas Böni (the founder of Planted). New investors, including US-based Joyful VC, Mandi Ventures, and Zürcher Kantonalbank, backed the company in this round. 

Eduard Meijer, Managing Director of Navus Ventures, comments: “This dairy-free cream with great taste, mouthfeel, versatility, and functionality can significantly improve alternative dairy, with a technology that has the potential to scale economically. We are excited to team up to help them make these products commonplace, catering to diverse consumer preferences.” 

Cultivated Biociences' team
Image courtesy of Cultivated Biosciences

A scalable fermenting process

Cultivated Biosciences was founded in 2021 in Zurich, Switzerland, to develop alternatives to dairy products with better flavor and texture and fewer ingredients.

The biotech has developed a platform involving a specific type of oleaginous yeast and biomass fermentation — a non-GMO, cost-effective, scalable technology different from precision fermentation — to create a natural emulsion or a “yeast cream.”

As explained by the company, rather than attempting to copy the molecular composition of dairy cream, its goal has been to create an alternative that matches its functionality, color, and taste. 

This achievement is possible because the yeast cream contains fats, proteins, and fibers, and its microstructure resembles the fat droplets found in milk, allowing it to achieve functional sensory parity with dairy cream. 

In addition, the ingredient is said to offer other advantages, such as enhancing the shelf life of dairy-free products and replacing additives without compromising taste.

A strawberry covered with a dairy-free cream
© Cultivated Biosciences

A revolutionary yeast cream

In 2022, the company raised $1.5 million to develop its creamy yeast-based ingredient and since then it has been working to scale its process from five to 1500 L bioreactors.

Tomas Turner, CEO of Cultivated Biosciences, shares: “This funding validates our innovative approach and enables us to introduce our revolutionary yeast cream to the market. We aim to make alternative dairy products appealing to traditional dairy consumers, not just to reduce CO2 emissions from dairy production but also to tap into a multi-billion dollar market opportunity.” 

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