DIC Corporation has completed an investment in Back of the Yards Algae Science (BYAS), a sustainable food technology startup focused on developing innovative extracts and alternative proteins, headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. The move strategically advances DIC’s growing business position in more sustainable and circular algae-derived products, including natural food colorants, natural food additives, and bio-stimulants — vital for improving vertical farming yields.
BYAS owns proprietary technology for efficiently extracting active ingredients from bio-based materials, notably algae and mycelia. BYAS currently produces unique products, such as the company’s spirulina (cyanobacteria) algae-based Heme Analog (BYAS-AHA), which is receiving intense interest for its ability to enhance the alternative meat taste and aroma.
Moreover, the BYAS proprietary zero-waste platform effectively utilizes all ingredients obtained from bio-based materials, contributing to both the improvement of consumer health and the circular economy, perfectly aligned with DIC’s Vision—to improve the human condition by safely delivering color and comfort for sustainable prosperity. Since becoming the first company in the world to successfully commercialize Spirulina production in the 1970s, the DIC Group has been a pioneer in Spirulina research, finding safe ways to use high-quality Spirulina powders and the Spirulina-derived edible pigment and natural blue food colorant Lina Blue in healthy food products, food materials, and livestock feed, globally.
Through this alliance, DIC and BYAS will share algae mass-culture technology and functional component extraction technology—that DIC has long-cultivated in the Spirulina business—to develop new products, further improve production efficiency, reduce waste, and improve sustainability through the more effective use of natural resources. Moreover, in collaboration with Parsippany, New Jersey-based Sun Chemical Corporation—a DIC Group member company operating in the United States and Europe—DIC plans to expand product sales globally while developing new applications. The DIC Group delivers safe, high-quality products to consumers. By strengthening its bio-based materials business, focused on Biomaterial Design in the healthcare field, DIC continues to enhance its contributions to Quality of Life (QOL) as set forth in its new long-term management plan, DIC Vision 2030.