Arcadia Biosciences announces fourth-quarter and full-year 2018 financial results and business highlights
Mar. 29, 2019
- Company delivers regulatory, scientific and commercial progress in four crops, and launches new strategy in cannabis
Arcadia Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: RKDA), a food ingredient company and proven leader in agricultural innovation, improving the quality and nutritional content of crops, today released its financial and business results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2018.
- GoodWheat™ Portfolio of Branded Specialty Wheats. In Q1 of 2018, Arcadia launched its GoodWheat brand of wheat ingredients that add value to the entire wheat value chain, from seed to table, by enabling a wider range of choices to meet evolving consumer demands. The platform includes Arcadia’s current and future non-GM wheat portfolio of high fiber Resistant Starch (RS) and Reduced Gluten (RG) wheat varieties, as well as future wheat innovations.
- Key Technical Milestones Achieved with High Fiber, Resistant Starch GoodWheat. Arcadia achieved key technical milestones in its high fiber, RS wheat lines in 2018. Arcadia’s RS wheat varieties contain 94 percent amylose, compared to 25 to 30 percent in traditional wheat. Increased levels of amylose correspond to higher levels of resistant starch, which has been proven to deliver significant health benefits. These same wheat varieties deliver levels of total dietary fiber high enough to meet the FDA’s threshold for “Good Source” of fiber and “High in Fiber” designations on consumer packaging. These new non-GM wheat varieties, naturally high in fiber, will help satisfy consumers’ demands for healthier, clean-label ingredients in their favorite wheat-based foods.
- Reduced Gluten Wheat Added to GoodWheat Portfolio. Arcadia added new Reduced Gluten wheat to the GoodWheat portfolio, a non-GM, patent-pending, identity preserved specialty wheat in which allergenic glutens have been reduced by 70 percent while the levels of glutens important for baking are not changed. With the growing number of consumers making a conscious effort to reduce gluten in their diets, Arcadia’s RG wheat represents a rich and untapped opportunity for specialty products and unique brand extensions.
- Industry Veterans Hired to Build Commercial Capabilities and Supply Chain Partnerships. Arcadia hired two agricultural biotech industry veterans to build its commercial capabilities. Sarah Reiter joined as chief commercial officer, and Grant Aldridge joined as head of commercial development to help build out the GoodWheat supply chain. Each of them has over 20 years of expertise in agronomic breeding, seed production and commercial development.
- US Patent Received for Extended Shelf Life Wheat. Arcadia was granted a U.S. patent for its Extended Shelf Life Wheat technology which extends the storage life of whole wheat flour by minimizing oxidation. This new trait was designed to promote whole wheat consumption by improving the shelf life and taste of whole grain wheat products.
- Partnership with Ardent Mills to Develop and Commercialize Innovative Wheat Traits. Arcadia announced a collaboration with Ardent Mills, the leading flour-milling and ingredient company in North America, to develop and commercialize innovative wheat varieties. The first project in this partnership will focus on extending the shelf life of whole wheat flour products to improve taste, reduce waste and positively impact health outcomes by increasing the consumption of whole grains.
- Verdeca General Manager Hired to Prepare for HB4 Commercialization. Arcadia’s joint venture with Bioceres Crop Solutions Corporation, Verdeca, hired Martin Mariani Ventura, a seasoned agriculture executive with over 20 years of experience in marketing and commercialization of new products, as General Manager.
- Regulatory Approval for HB4 Drought Tolerance Trait Stacked with Herbicide Tolerance. Verdeca received approval in Argentina for its HB4 drought tolerant trait stacked with herbicide tolerant traits in soybeans. The approval allows Verdeca to incorporate tolerance to both glyphosate and glufosinate-ammonium into the trait and expands the addressable acres for HB4 technology in South America.
- HB4 Drought Tolerant Soybean Trials in Argentina Demonstrate Efficacy in Drought Conditions. During the 2017-18 field trial season in Argentina, HB4 Drought Tolerant soybeans showed improved yields under drought conditions in elite breeding lines. More than 50 million of the world’s soybean hectares are grown in Argentina and Brazil, a region that has experienced significant drought conditions in recent years. Verdeca estimates that 30 percent of these hectares are the addressable market for the HB4 trait.
- Extended Shelf Life Tomato Achieves Key Milestone. Arcadia reached a technical milestone with partner Shriram Bioseed in India for Extended Shelf Life tomatoes. This non-GM trait is bred to fully ripen on the vine yet remain durable enough to survive the packing and shipping process, reducing post harvest damage and costly waste. This milestone demonstrates Arcadia’s ability to innovate novel traits in crops that add value for growers and other stakeholders in the supply chain.
- Double-Digit Yield Increases Demonstrated in Stacked Traits in Rice. Three of Arcadia’s abiotic stress traits stacked together demonstrated double digit yield increases in rice in two crop seasons of field trials. Multiple lines carrying the nitrogen use efficiency (NUE), water use efficiency (WUE) and salinity tolerance (ST) traits outperformed control lines by an average of 25 percent under limiting nitrogen applications, when measured for yield.
- $24M Raised in Financing. During 2018, Arcadia raised a total of $24M in financing, through a private placement (PIPE) financing and a registered direct offering. These funds will be used to support commercialization activities for its portfolio of health and nutrition products.
Q1 Achievements and Strategic Outlook
- New Business Unit Dedicated to Cannabis. In February 2019, Arcadia launched Arcadia Specialty Genomics, to leverage the company’s years of plant science, industry and regulatory expertise, offering value-added capabilities for rapid growth in cannabis-based functional ingredients. This dedicated business unit will develop a proprietary germplasm estate and traits for license to cultivators, and for products serving the nutraceutical and food industries. These innovations are made possible through a proprietary approach combining conventional breeding, TILLING and gene editing. Matt Plavan, Arcadia’s CFO, will lead the business unit as president of Arcadia Specialty Genomics.
- Licensed to Grow Hemp in Hawaii. Hawaii’s Department of Agriculture recently granted Arcadia Biosciences a license for their Industrial Hemp Pilot Program. With this license, Arcadia Specialty Genomics can begin its research and cultivation immediately, and plans are already underway to begin planting in April.
- First Sales of GoodWheat expected in 2019. Arcadia’s focus will continue on building and expanding partnerships throughout the wheat supply chain with growers, seed companies, millers and food companies. The first product in the GoodWheat portfolio, Resistant Starch wheat, is anticipated to be commercially available in 2019, so these partnerships will be key to launching innovative wheat ingredients and forming the foundation of a long-term, sustainable business.
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