Increasing demands for healthy eating and home cooking have outstripped supplies of fresh herbs. In order to increase supply producers have expanded greenhouse facilities, but this is costly (£3.75M/greenhouse) and energy inefficient.
An alternative is to cross-breed new plant varieties, but this is a risky process that can cost up to £3M and take at least 10 years. This may be justified for staple crops, but horticulture crops like herbs may never have access to these breeding facilities due to the high costs of conventional breeding.
Uniqueness, Technology overview, barriers to competition
Our innovative workflow is a combination of trade secret genomics, novel molecular technique known as CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing and proprietary automated screening technology. This process can cut down plant breeding times from an average of 8-12 years to 2 years, save money (from £3M/variety to estimated £200k/variety) and eliminate chance from plant breeding. This is a technology platform that potentially allows any plant species to be designed with better characteristics and improved in a fast cost-effective manner.
Market size and analysis
The herbs and spices market is £2Bn globally and of that £100M is the UK fresh herb market, which grows at 18% CAGR. In Germany the value is £120M and it grows at 13% CAGR. Horticulture market overall is worth £120bn in Europe. It presents high value added as it uses only 3% of overall agriculture land in Europe, but accounts for 18% of total value of agriculture production.
|First Name||Last Name||Job Title||Impressive Facts|
|William||Pelton||CEO||Entrepreneur & Plant Science Expert who developed first gene edited potato in UK while member of Horticulture and Potato Initiative during his time at Imperial College London.|
|Nicolas||Kral||CTO||Inventor and Synthetic Biology enthusiast who published in high level scientific journal and led more than 10 undergraduate and masters level students when based at Imperial College London.|
|Hadi||Coe||Lead Scientist||Plant Science Expert who published in several high level scientific journals and developed a novel method for plant tissue culture during his time at the Warwick University for which he filed a patent.|
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