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Sumitomo Corporation signs an MoU valued at over $100m with Nutrition Technologies for distribution in Japan


Sumitomo Corporation has signed an MoU agreement with Nutrition Technologies with a portfolio valued at over US$100m. The MoU allows Sumitomo to distribute Nutrition Technologies products into the Japanese market for use in a range of sectors, including petfood and aquafeed products. Sumitomo Corporation is an existing investor of Nutrition Technologies and is strategically aligned to the company’s mission of sustainably feeding the global population through a circular economy. 

Sumitomo Corporation recognises the advantage of Nutrition Technologies’ low-energy, tropical production technology compared to other manufacturers of insect-based products. With the growing demand for food and increasing pressure on protein supply, Sumitomo Corporation sees the need for more sustainable products and the opportunity presented by Nutrition Technologies products, which are made from Black Soldier Fly Larvae (BSFL). 

This is an exciting opportunity for Nutrition Technologies to extend their commercial reach in Japan, thanks to Sumitomo Corporation’s extensive distribution network and aligned companies within their group. This extensive market network and in-depth consumer insight will facilitate the Japanese market to access sustainably manufactured insect-based products, creating a more sustainable and equitable food system in the process. 

“This distribution agreement not only secures supply for our existing customers and the strength of demand we have for future production, but emphasises our commitment to the success of Nutrition Technologies, and underlines the strategic alignment between the two companies. We envisage a bright future where the two businesses can grow together,” says Masahito Uno, General Manager Life Sciences Division Sumitomo Corporation. 

Sumitomo Corporation also recognises that there are many other opportunities outside of the feed sector, such as in sustainable cosmetics and Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), and is already creating linkages with key partners to develop these products, which are expected to come online in the coming years. 

Global food security has steadily declined for the past few decades and has been significantly tested in recent years through extreme weather events and war. Population growth has fuelled the current 1.2 billion tonnes demand for animal feed ingredients, which has severe environmental consequences both for land and sea. There is a growing protein deficit, with supplies of traditional proteins for animal feed, such as fishmeal and soybean meal, stagnating due to overfishing and deforestation. Meanwhile, organic matter and food waste in landfills are significant contributors of greenhouse gas emissions, and the overuse of chemical fertilisers is severely reducing the productivity and resilience of crucial agricultural soil. 

Sumitomo Corporation is a leading Fortune 500 global trading and business investment company with 131 locations in 66 countries and regions. Sumitomo Corporations, conducts commodity transactions in all industries utilising worldwide networks, provides customers with financing, serves as an organiser and a coordinator for various projects, and invests in companies to promote greater growth potential. 

Nutrition Technologies manufacture and supply insect protein meal, oil and frass (insect manure) to help feed the growing agriculture and feed industries around the world. Using a combination of beneficial microbes and Black Soldier Fly Larvae (BSFL) using a low-energy, zero-waste production model to grow their insects, the larvae are reared on clean and traceable agro-industrial by-products. As a tropical species, the Black Soldier Fly larvae grow quickly and efficiently in the ambient Malaysian climate, meaning that very little energy is required to grow or breed the flies. The company currently ships industrial volumes of material throughout Europe, Asia & South America, from the two hectare factory in Malaysia. 

“We have been working with Sumitomo for a number of years, and this is another rewarding step forward in our shared journey towards a more sustainable future. Japan represents a very exciting market for us, and as we already work together, Sumitomo are the perfect partner to continue this development,” says Nick Piggott & Tom Berry, Co-CEOs and Co-founders of Nutrition Technologies. 

The insect sector has gathered increasing attention over the past few years, with the global insect protein market alone estimated to be worth US$343 million in 2021, and expected to grow with a CAGR of 26.49 percent to reach US$1.3 billion by 2027. As a sustainable solution to help minimise multiple unsustainable practices, the sector as a whole has seen investments totalling nearly US$1 billion, but with multiple technological hurdles, few companies are yet to reach industrial scale. 

For more information about Sumitomo Corporation visit the website, HERE.

For information about Nutrition Technologies visit the website, HERE.



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