MOA Foodtech and eniferBio can be excited about having been chosen to take part in Purina’s Unleashed Accelerator Program to get the opportunity being mentored by experts from Purina. Four other pet care start ups Portugal-based knok, Spain-based Kibus, Austria-based Feragen and Egypt-based Vetwork were also accorded the honour of participating in the accelerator program. The participants were chosen out of 150 startups. Next to a intense mentorship, each company will get CHF 50,000 ($51,731 USD).

Purina’s Unleashed program is the only accelerator program for pet care. Purina aims to push innovation and development of new pet products and services in Europe, Asia and Oceania.

MOA Foodtech, located in Spain, focusses on upcycling food waste and byproducts to produce human and pet food.

“We believe that the pet food industry is a crucial part of the food industry as a whole, and we are dedicated to expanding our efforts into making healthy and sustainable food,” said Bosco Emperanza, chief executive officer of MOA Foodtech. “Previously, we have been focused on products for humans, so we believe that Purina is the perfect partner to get to know the pet food sector and see how we can have an impact on sustainability and nutrition.”

Finland-based eniferBio develops PEKILO®, a sustainable mycoprotein that can be used in aquaculture, pet food and human food.

The startup eniferBio from Finland owns the sustainable mycoprotein PEKILO®, which is used for aquaculture, pet food and human food.

“The PEKILO® protein produced by eniferBio is the most competitive alternative protein out there, and the production technology is ready to scale,” said Simo Ellilä, chief executive officer and co-founder of eniferBio. “Through Unleashed, we want to understand the potential of introducing our unique protein to the companion animal sector.

“More and more attention is being paid to the quality and sustainability of the ingredients in pet food today and Purina is a leader in this segment, so obviously an ideal partner to investigate whether there is a product-market-fit,” Ellilä added.

“We are delighted to welcome such an extraordinary group of innovators into the 2022 cohort,” said Kim Bill, head of the Purina Accelerator Lab. “Just like Purina, these businesses are driven to innovate and challenge the industry through technology, and data-driven solutions. While the next six months will be busy, we cannot wait to see what they will build.”

“After a global pandemic, the number of pet owners and animal lovers worldwide is greater than ever, and the industry is responding by accelerating its innovation, offering greener, smarter and better solutions than ever before,” said Jeff Hamilton, chief executive officer of Nestlé Purina PetCare Europe.

The accelerator program has pushed 12 startups since 2020.

“Start-ups joining Unleashed can expect a well-resourced and transparent co-development process — this is quite unique when starting a relationship with a large corporate,” said Max Swinscow Hall, chief executive officer and co-founder of Biokind.

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