July 7 2022 02:27 PM

Investors back Fyto's mission to power an optimized global food system

The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.

Fyto, the company leveraging automation to unlock the power of specialized aquatic plants, announced today it has raised $15 million in Series A funding. The round was led by GV (formerly Google Ventures), with existing investors AgFunder, Refactor Capital, First Star Ventures, and Bolt also participating in the round.

Fyto has developed hardware and software systems that automate and scale the production of highly nutritious aquatic plants, which will form a more resilient foundation for feed, food, and soil health. Fyto’s technologies allow farmers to increase productivity and improve nutrient management while significantly reducing production costs, water usage, and greenhouse gas emissions.

"We’re thrilled to partner with GV, who share our vision of working with food producers to create a more economically and environmentally balanced food system," said Jason Prapas, Ph.D., Founder and CEO, Fyto. "This round of funding, along with the support of our prior investors, enables Fyto to achieve commercial-scale production of these amazing plants, while conducting rigorous scientific trials to quantify the benefits we can present to farmers and the climate.”

Fyto’s technologies produce essential nutrients in much more efficient ways than traditional agricultural methods. These superplants, which can be grown and harvested year-round, are packed with key amino acids, energy, vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids, and have been shown to be highly palatable and digestible. In 2021, the Company piloted its technology on a dairy farm in Northern California with exceptional results.

Fyto’s patented, automated system can utilize waste streams from farming operations as inputs and has the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from these operations by more than 50 percent. Fyto’s farms can generate 10-20X more protein per acre while using 5-10X less water than industry-standard feed ingredients, such as alfalfa, the largest water consumer in the State of California. Fyto has multiple sectors in its global plan, starting with feed for dairy cows.

“The global food system is facing enormous challenges, and Fyto’s automation technology holds the promise to create a more sustainable solution for farmers,” says GV General Partner Andy Wheeler, who has joined Fyto’s Board of Directors. “The company can have an immediate impact in livestock applications while advancing its technology platform to create meaningful progress in the agricultural sector.”