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Trendlines' agrifood fund invests in Singapore urban insect farm startup

CATALIST-LISTED startup incubator The Trendlines Group on Monday said its agrifood fund has invested an undisclosed amount in Singapore-based Insectta, an urban insect farm which recently pivoted to the extraction of biomaterials from insects.

Insectta was founded in 2017 and produces materials from insects which can be applied across industries such as agrifood, pharmaceutical and electronics. The materials include a biodegradable polymer called chitosan, which is used in biomedical engineering, food and biodegradable plastics.

"The market for chitosan is expected to grow dramatically as new applications are developed and mass-produced," the announcement said.

Insectta also works in cooperation with research bodies in Singapore and has commercial relationships with various entities in East Asia, Trendlines said.

The Trendlines Agrifood Fund was set up in September 2019. It received conditional commitments of up to US$22 million from investors, including Temasek and Librae Holdings, an entity related to UK business tycoon Vincent Tchenguiz.

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Insectta is the fund's second investment, the first being Equinom, a seed-breeding technology firm, which was announced in February this year.

Insectta will operate from Trendlines's AgriFood Innovation Centre incubator offices in Singapore, said Trendlines Agrifood Fund chief executive Nitza Kardish.

Trendlines shares were trading flat at 10.7 Singapore cents as at 12.17pm on Monday.

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