Apr 28, 2023
Partnership opens Japanese market to Nutrition Technologies
Sumitomo Corp. has formed a new partnership that will allow the Tokyo-based trading company to distribute Nutrition Technologies’ insect-based products in the Japanese market.
Nutrition Technologies, headquartered in Singapore with a production plant in Malaysia, manufactures protein, oil and organic fertilizer from black soldier fly larvae. The company recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Sumitomo, a Fortune 500 trading and investment company with 131 locations worldwide.
An existing investor in Nutrition Technologies, Sumitomo’s portfolio is valued at more than $100 million.
“This distribution agreement not only secures supply for our existing customers and the strength of demand we have for future production but emphasizes our commitment to the success of Nutrition Technologies and underlines the strategic alignment between the two companies,” Masahito Uno, general manager of Sumitomo’s Life Sciences division, said in a statement. “We envisage a bright future where the two businesses can grow together.”
Founded in 2015 by two former United Nations officials concerned about the future global demand for protein, Nutrition Technologies has developed manufacturing techniques and systems specifically designed to collect food residue and by-products from black soldier flies, whose advantages over other potential insect protein sources include reproductive capacity, protein concentration and disease resistance.
The company’s products include pet food, oil and an organic fertilizer and soil conditioner, Hi.Frass, which contains soil-positive microbes and is ideal for use in compound fertilizer production or direct field application, according to its website.
“We have been working with Sumitomo for a number of years, and this is another rewarding step forward in our shared journey toward a more sustainable future,” said Nutrition Technologies co-founders Nick Piggott and Tom Berry. “Japan represents a very exciting market for us, and as we already work together, Sumitomo is the perfect partner to continue this development.”
Sumitomo’s Animal Health Science Department will promote the development and marketing of insect-based protein feed by capitalizing on the company’s business network, according to a statement on Sumitomo’s website.
“Pursuing the strategic partnership with NT, a startup committed to creating a recycling-oriented, sustainable, self-sufficient economy, we will be in harmony with the global environment by accelerating our efforts toward effective use of limited natural resources and the creation of a recycling-oriented society,” the statement said.
Sumitomo said it is already working to develop additional products utilizing the technology outside of the feed sector, including sustainable cosmetics and sustainable aviation fuel.
Nutrition Technologies also recently received approval from across the European Union and the United Kingdom to distribute its products in the region.