ADM and Benson Hill, Inc. have entered a long-term strategic partnership to scale innovative soy ingredients to help meet the rapidly growing demand for plant-based proteins and serve a variety of plant-based food and beverage markets to meet savory, sweet and dairy customer needs, the companies announced Aug. 8.
As part of the partnership, ADM said it will process and commercialize a portfolio of proprietary ingredients derived from Benson Hill Ultra-High Protein (UHP) soybeans through an exclusive North American licensing partnership. In addition, the companies plan to scale innovative ingredients enabled by Benson Hill genetics that feature less-processed proteins with significant water and carbon sustainability benefits.
“We’re excited to launch this collaboration with Benson Hill, building full seed-to-fork capabilities with cutting-edge technologies that will allow us to offer new, innovative products to our alternative protein customers,” says Leticia Gonçalves, president of Global Foods for ADM, based in Chicago, Illinois.
Gonçalves noted that the global trends of food security and sustainability are driving significant and ongoing demand growth for alternative proteins. Alternative meat and dairy sales alone are expected to grow 14% a year, reaching $125 billion by 2030. ADM has expanded global capacity to meet that demand with the acquisition of Sojaprotein and the recently announced investment to enhance processing and supply capabilities and build a new protein solutions innovation center in Decatur, Ill.
“Now, working with Benson Hill, we’re taking the next step, expanding our value chain and adding new technologies that will power our ability to offer differentiated, high-value products to meet consumer demand for delicious, nutritious alternative proteins,” Gonçalves says.
Based in St. Louis, Benson Hill’s CropOS technology platform combines food science, data science and plant science for plant genomics innovation. It brings together data analytics and biological knowledge to combine the genetic information of a plant, formulation needs of a customer and data from farmers to help develop more nutritious, flavorful and sustainable ingredients. When combined with ADM’s expertise and capabilities in origination, applications and formulation, as well as current and expanded processing capacity for human food markets, the collaboration will create a pathway toward commercial-scale seed-to-fork production of higher-value alternative protein products.
The two companies will jointly engage farmer partners seeking opportunities to participate in the seed-to-fork food revolution.“Seed innovation underpins the seed-to-fork movement by solving food formulation challenges in the farmer’s field, creating ingredients that are better from the beginning,” says Matt Crisp, chief executive officer of Benson Hill. “We are excited to partner with ADM to help address demand in high-value and high-growth protein ingredient markets, while broadly delivering innovation and impact across the agri-food value chain to benefit farmers, food companies and consumers.”