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Benson Hill opens new Crop Accelerator to further accelerate product development to meet growing market demandqrcode

−− On-target launch continues Benson Hill's execution of strategic plan to increase availability of plant-based protein ingredients

Oct. 28, 2021

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Oct. 28, 2021

Benson Hill opens new Crop Accelerator to further accelerate product development to meet growing market demand

Benson Hill, Inc., a food tech company unlocking the natural genetic diversity of plants with its cutting-edge food innovation engine, announced on October 27 the opening of its new Crop Accelerator, a state-of-the-art, controlled environment research facility located near the Company's St. Louis headquarters. The Crop Accelerator is operational ahead of schedule and under budget, with the facility's first soybean and yellow pea seeds planted on September 17.

Benson Hill's CropOS® technology platform combines data science, plant science and food science to predict breeding targets that enhance the nutrition, flavor and sustainability of a crop. The Crop Accelerator will enable rapid testing and selection of target candidates, and insights and data points gathered during each growing cycle will further enhance the predictive capabilities of the CropOS® platform. This cycle of feedback will accelerate the Company's ability to develop new offerings, including continued expansion of its robust portfolio of proprietary ingredients designed to serve the growing alternative meat market that is forecasted to reach approximately $140 billion by 2029.

The Crop Accelerator is designed to provide a more than twenty-fold expansion in testing capacity, and incorporates automation and imaging capabilities to streamline operations and throughput. The 47,000 square-foot facility features dynamically adaptive Conviron® growth houses and chambers, equipped with multi-channel LEDs, additive CO2, temperature, humidity and lighting controls. The first plants are thriving, a testament to the facility's design and operational efficiency, and experiments are underway to further reduce development timelines with a focus on scalability, speed and consistency.

"The Crop Accelerator is another example of how Benson Hill leverages cutting edge technology and innovative thinking to drive bold outcomes," said Jason Bull, Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer of Benson Hill. "By combining the AI-driven breeding capabilities of CropOS® with the controlled environment and accelerated growth cycles of the Crop Accelerator, our team can even more rapidly predict, test and develop game-changing ingredients starting with a better seed."

The Crop Accelerator is home to 27 employees, and the Company is looking to hire more innovators in plant science, data science and food science as it continues its expansion to meet demand for its ingredients.

Source: Benson Hill

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