Press release: Qatar-based Gulf Biotech buys license from Unibio to turn natural gas into sustainable protein
Gulf Biotech, the Doha-based industrial biotech investor, and Unibio, the leading sustainable protein company, have signed a license agreement to produce sustainable and organic protein in Qatar. The abundant availability of natural gas makes Qatar an ideal location for the conversion of natural gas into protein.
Gulf Biotech has signed a license agreement for a plant that will initially have one module – consisting of four U-Loop® fermenters with a total annual capacity of 6,000 tonnes of Uniprotein®. The technology is based on a modular design and extra modules can easily be added to expand the production. Gulf Biotech will now focus on planning for the construction of the facility. The Uniprotein® produced in the plant will be used as a protein supplement in feed for fish and animals to replace unsustainable existing products derived from fish meal or soy.
The planned facility will be the region’s first natural gas to protein plant and will be based on Unibio’s U-Loop® technology, where natural gas is converted through continuous fermentation into Uniprotein®. The production of Uniprotein® is highly resource-efficient and sustainable compared with the production of traditional protein, such as fish meal and soy. Relative to soy production, Uniprotein® uses 1/300th of the water and 1/25,000th of the land.
With the signing of this agreement, Gulf Biotech, represented by His Excellency Hitmi Al-Hitmi, has shown its commitment to using innovative technology and Qatar’s natural resources to tackle the highly pressing challenge of producing sustainable food for the world’s rapidly growing population.
Henrik Busch-Larsen, CEO of Unibio states: “The abundance of natural gas in Qatar makes the country an obvious choice for the production of Uniprotein®. We are delighted to be partnering with Gulf Biotech who are visionary, ambitious, and open to new technologies. Together, we can help address one of Qatar’s and the world’s major challenges and sustainably feed the world’s growing population. We look forward to bringing our partnership to the next phase where we will plan the engineering and construction of the new plant.”
His Excellency Hitmi Al-Hitmi, Founder of Gulf Biotech, said: “We are extremely pleased to have signed the region’s first license agreement with Unibio for a plant to produce organic and sustainable protein from natural gas. As the world seeks to feed its ever-growing population in an environmentally sustainable manner, the opportunity for us to produce protein-based on the fermentation of natural gas in Qatar is highly important. We see enormous potential for the future sustainable development of our business in Qatar and beyond.”
Is a young company founded by His Excellency Hitmi Al-Hitmi to promote and invest in the industrial biotechnology sector. It is pleased to start its mission with an innovative and sustainable project such as using natural gas to produce animal feed protein using Unibio’s patented technology. This will help to put Qatar on the industrial map as a world leader in the production of animal feed proteins using natural gas.
Unibio, the leading sustainable protein systems company, uses microbial fermentation to convert any natural gas or methane, including bio-gas, into high-quality and sustainable protein for fish and animal feed. It is Unibio’s mission to deliver sustainable protein for farming and fishing practices. Unibio’s technology is highly resource efficient in respect of land and water usage and is sustainable. Our process mimics the microbial consumption of gases emitted by decaying plant material that happens every day in nature. Our high-quality Uniprotein® product has been approved by the EU for animal and fish feed and is certified organic by Organic Farmers & Growers Ltd, the leading organic certification control body approved by the UK Government.
Uniprotein® product – a sustainable protein
Uniprotein® product is derived from the continuous-flow fermentation of a microbial culture using any type of natural gas or methane, including bio-gas. Uniprotein® product has a 70% protein content that easily compares with high-value proteins like super-prime fishmeal and highly concentrated soy products, especially in aquaculture feeds and as starter feed for piglets. Uniprotein® product will be sold through a network of distributors, as well as directly to large key accounts around the world.
U-Loop® technology is a continuous-flow fermentation process allowing for a high conversion rate, the high utilization of gases and economical production. Through our proprietary process, the gases are converted to protein that is subsequently treated and purified to a nutritious, high-quality feed grade. Unibio owns the intellectual property rights to U-Loop® technology.