Foodtech innovators Neggst have now raised over €5 million following its seed round. The Berlin-based startup is on a mission to upgrade the chicken egg to a vegan version that still has the shell, yolk and egg white.
Whether you like them scrambled, poached or fried or you use them in those baking recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation, eggs are a staple ingredient right across the world. It’s a fundamental ingredient in a lot of dishes and a popular protein source that is consumed by billions around the world. But, our diet is changing. Foodtech innovation is bringing about new protein sources, moving away from animal-derived products into an era of plant-based and vegan alternatives.
Foodtech startup Neggst has become one of the first companies to develop a plant-based egg that still has the white, yolk and an eggshell that mimics nature – all created without any help from chickens.
The startup has now raised a total of €5 million.
Neggst team: “First of all, it takes creativity and the technical know-how to develop a tasty and well functioning plant-based egg alternative. However, to make it available to the masses, strong investors and partners are absolutely necessary. We are very pleased with the trust placed in Neggst in the first seed round and are ready for the second closing.”
Pecking into a new seed round, the Berlin-based team has now secured over €5 million in total investment. The funding was led by Impact Fund Green Generation Fund (GGF).
The Green Generation Fund announced its €100 million fund in August this year, on a mission to support innovators that are creating sustainable approaches and solutions for generations to come – focusing on green tech and foodtech.
Green Generation Fund on investing in Neggst: “We invest in companies that develop solutions to the really big problems of our time. Neggst can eliminate mass laying batteries for hens and save approximately one percent of global CO2 emissions through resource-efficient production of their plant based alternative. We believe Neggst can be a global leader with its versatile product for the ‘egg’ category, like Oatly for dairy and Beyond Meat for meat alternatives.”
In addition, BayWa AG, a global player in the agricultural, energy and construction sectors and, according to the UN, one of the world’s 50 Sustainability and Climate Leaders, RWZ (Raiffeisen Waren-Zentrale Rhein-Main eG), the family office Corecam Capital Partners (Pte Ltd.) and renowned business angels are participating.
Marcus Pölliger, BayWa board member: “With our commitment, we are contributing to the further growth of Neggst Food GmbH. The demand for plant-based alternatives to conventional protein sources will increase in the coming years. For farmers, this will result in new attractive sales channels for plant-based agricultural raw materials. For this, Neggst is a forward looking, ideal partner for us.”
Future of food innovation
Founded in 2021, Neggst was developed by Veronica Garcia-Arteaga during her research work at the Fraunhofer Institute. The goal was to make the progressive vegan egg feel like an “upgrade” from a chicken egg, rather than depriving people of their protein of choice. The development of a plant-based equivalent to one of the most complex foods of all, the hen’s egg, is groundbreaking because the difference in terms of nutritional values, taste, appearance and functional diversity is hardly recognizable to many.
The truth is, consumers often need convincing to turn to sustainable alternatives, especially when food is involved. The product needs to be accessible and convincing in terms of taste and texture. Neggst has been developed to achieve this, based on two years of intensive research, sophisticated technology and complex processes that require not only know-how and innovative thinking, but also solid capital – which was initially provided by the help of industry partners Zentis and Ehrmann as well as the Fraunhofer IVV.
Kristal Robles-Golan, Head of New Protein Solutions at BayWa: “Eggs were the fastest-growing plant-based alternative category in the U.S. in 2021, with sales increasing 42 percent, while conventional egg sales declined four percent. The market of plant-based alternatives in Europe is still young but growing strongly. Offering functional, sustainable and tasty solutions to this is one of the core challenges.”
Looking to the future and the Neggst team are cracking on. The company has inspired support from investors from Green Generation Fund, BayWa AG, RWZ eG and Corecam AG. They can also count on the support of renosened businesses angels such as : Cookies Cream, Berlin’s first vegetarian star restaurant, including its well-known star chef Stephan Hentschel, the former Infarm CFO and one.five founder Martin Weber and the former Chief Technology Officer of Beyond Meat, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Bernhard van Lengerich.
Further pilot projects with food service companies are already underway, and in the future Neggst’s vegan egg will also be available in grocery stores.
Stephan Hentschel, Chef de Cousine, Cookies Cream Restaurant, Berlin: “My experience with Neggst has been very good. I’m really pleased with the product and really enjoy working with it. We already have a dish on the Cookies Cream menu using Neggst, and we’re in the process of developing more dishes with Neggst.”