Biotechnology firm AlgaeCytes is planning to build its first commercial algal eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) plant in Germany, the company announced on 24 May.

The plant in Dessau, Saxon-Anhalt, Germany, would be owned and operated by the company’s German subsidiary, AlgaeCytes Germany, according to the statement.

AlgaeCytes said its algae-based technology would be used at the facility to produce natural, vegetarian, traceable, high-potency algal EPA, beta carotene and agricultural crop biostimulant from sustainable sources for the nutraceutical, pharmlaceutical and food sectors.

“Our expectation is that this will be the first of many operations for us planned over the next five years across Europe, the USA, the UK and the Middle East,” AlgaeCytes executive chairman Adrian Neilan said.

Total investment in the Dessau project was expected to exceed US$60.8M (€50M), the company said, and the plant’s design was based on the company’s UK facility in Discovery Park, Kent, which would remain its headquarters.

Construction was due to begin in the fourth quarter of this year and the new plant was due to become operational by the third quarter of next year, the company said.