A US Biotech company is investing £30m to develop a revolutionary new fish feed production centre on Teesside.

California-based Calysta is to build a research and development centre next to the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI), at Wilton, near Redcar.

The centre will develop the process to produce FeedKind, a new fish feed protein ingredient which will reduce the salmon fish farming world’s use of fishmeal.

FeedKind is a natural, safe, non-GMO sustainable fish feed ingredient which has been approved for sale in the European Union.

Calysta, through its subsidiary Calysta (UK) Ltd, has received a conditional grant of up to £2.8m from the UK Government's Exceptional Regional Growth Fund (eRGF), subject to due diligence.

The project is expected to safeguard and create up to 39 positions in science, engineering and operations, along with indirect jobs in construction and the supply chain.

Alan Shaw, Calysta president and chief executive, is from Teesside and said: "The eRGF grant is a major vote of confidence for us from the UK Government. After looking at potential sites around Europe, we look forward to building Calysta's first plant on Teesside.

"Teesside remains an important centre for the process industry. We are keen to capitalise on the area’s commercial attractiveness, technical skills and research and development expertise.

"Our plant will not only provide a boost for the economy of North East England, but will also support the UK’s goal to become a world leader in the emerging industrial biotechnology sector by generating game changing technology in gas fermentation and synergistic applications."

FeedKind is manufactured using a natural process similar to the production of yeast-extract sandwich spreads. Studies have confirmed the nutritional value of the feed, based on growth performance and animal health.

Calysta is marketing FeedKind Aqua to the global salmon farming industry which, in the UK alone, is expected to grow 50 per cent by 2020.

By replacing fishmeal with a nutritious naturally occurring protein, the industry can reduce its impact on the environment and on wild fisheries, while offering consumers a more sustainable product.

Calysta has two business divisions – Calysta Nutrition develops and commercialises fish and livestock nutritional products; Calysta Energy is developing high value industrial chemical products with cost and performance advantages over current processes.