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Amfora Plans to Pump Up Protein

With a cool $6 million injection from Spruce Capital Partners and Leaps by Bayer, Amfora is inching closer to its goal of producing plants that pack a protein punch.

The San Francisco-based food tech startup uses gene editing to make precise genome modifications to regulate the genetic switch that controls the balance between carbohydrates and protein.

The gist: it’s an inside job to make crops produce and store additional protein instead of starch and fiber.

Amfora is using cutting-edge technologies to address the important challenges of food security, climate change, and growing consumer demands for protein-rich foods,” said Ganesh Kishore, Managing Partner of Spruce Capital Partners and a founder of Amfora.

Amfora also announced an agreement with Plastomics, a development stage plant biotech company that uses the crop’s chloroplast – aka solar engine – to introduce traits, putting innovation in the fast lane.

Kinda like a gene wingman, Plastomics’ tech will be used to introduce Amfora’s gene-editing constructs.

Where this goes: Amfora is first focusing on soybeans with the recent financing allowing them to move forward with additional crops.

Next on the docket? They’ve got their sights set on wheat and rice to address food security, human nutritional needs, obesity, and diabetes.