Meet the start-ups: Mello - BioInnovation Institute

Meet the start-ups: Mello

Meet the start-ups: Mello

Mello is on a mission to solve the longstanding challenge of delivering effective probiotics and bioactives. We had a chat with the CEO and Founder of Mello, Lisa Tammi, to get more acquainted with the company.

What is the idea behind the company?

Mello is a bioindustrials company raising the bar on current ‘state of the art’ with our unique microencapsulation delivery solutions for probiotics and bioactives’. Microencapsulation is a protective technology used across a multitude of industries – from food and drink, to pharma, agriculture, and beyond – to deliver a myriad of otherwise sensitive and unstable ‘actives’, in a controlled manner. We’re focused initially on the microencapsulation of probiotics and bioactives. Microencapsulation should isolate the ‘actives’ to ensure stability during production and shelf life (both as an ingredient and in the application), and safe delivery to the specific site of action in the body. Today, however, there is no microencapsulation method that combines all the above properties in one technology. That’s why we’re working on improving the efficiency of microencapsulation to develop a solution that will address the above in one. Our mission is to power the beneficial potential of ‘actives’.

What is the key driver for Mello?

Mello is driven by the opportunity to enhance human and planetary health, via food and drink. As the discovery of beneficial ‘actives’ increases, and we can map and utilize their biological effects, it is estimated that we’ll have a natural and seismic potential to transform human and even planetary wellbeing. Technology however is still the limiting factor and needs first to advance – this is where we come in. We at Mello are working hard to substantially advance microencapsulation to ‘state of art’, for it to become a truly enabling technology optimizing the efficacy of ‘actives’, first within food and drink and eventually within biopharma.

How can Mello’s technology play a role in the transition towards more plant-based food production?

The recent innovation in plant-based food and drink has focused mostly on organoleptic properties in for example burger and nugget-like formats, rather than on nutrient density. There is an understandable concern that this could lead to health-related health issues in the future and according to a survey carried out by Copenhagen University (2021), is a barrier as to why some people are apparently skeptical about transitioning to a more plant-based diet. Enhancing nutritional profiles by incorporating exogenous ‘actives’ into plant-based alternatives is however challenging, in part due to stability issues. This is a clear opportunity area for Mello and one where we intend to focus our technology development. We aim to inspire – and enable the incorporation of bioavailable nutrition into plant-based food and drinks.

Who are your main competitors and how do you differ from them?

Our main competitors are Contract Manufacturing Organisations, Enterprise food and health companies, and SMEs that focus on microencapsulation delivery solutions. We are however doing something different – we’ve developed a proprietary water-free process to generate a TrueCoreTM particle at micro size, using a lipid-based combination. Through conversation with the industry, we have validated that our technology has a clear competitive advantage and that it will fulfill an unmet industry need.


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