Danisco invests in diagnostic tools to fight food contamination

By Lindsey Partos

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Food safety

Investing in faster tools to fight the risk of food contamination,
the venture capital arm of leading ingredients firm Danisco will
pour more funds into German technology company Profos.

Following an investment of "several million euros"​ in 2003, Danisco Venture announced this week it is part of a consortium injecting a further €5 million into the German diagnostics firm.

Tougher regulatory standards and the increased reporting of food contamination in supermarkets and processing plants has forced food firms to put a higher priority on safety, shelf life and cleanliness.

The trend has fuelled the demand for more stringent testing and tracing of food products along the supply chain to the consumer.

Profos is working on a new technology that uses very small proteins for capturing bacteria, for instance salmonella, and bacteria components.

"For food diagnostic purposes the proteins can give a very high degree of specificity and faster results,"​ Lars Dybkjær, head of Danisco Venture​ explains to FoodNavigator.com.

While still at the development stage for food, new knowledge on food diagnostics acquired from Profos exploration will potentially be cross-fertilised with the mother Danisco group: Danisco supplies 1000s of ingredients, from stabilisers to biopreservation and functional systems.

Profos technology platform applicable to food safety includes: food preservation products that prolong the shelf life of food products, and food diagnostic products used for testing unwanted bacteria.

"As Danisco is heavily engaged in the area of food safety, Profos fits well with the overall Danisco strategy. We look forward to working with the Profos team to further develop the company,"​ says Dybkjær.

In addition to Danisco, Finnish firm Bio Fund Management and German company Capital Stage joined the consortium in the latest financing round for Profos.

Established in May 2001, to date Danisco Venture has invested in nine companies, that all touch the area of food ingredients.

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