Ascribe Bioscience, an Ithaca, N.Y.-based crop protection startup, raised $2.5M in Seed funding.
The round was co-led by The Yield Lab and Acre Venture Partners with participation from Trailhead Capital and Ponderosa Ventures.
Founded in 2017 based on discoveries by Professors Dan Klessig and Frank Schroeder at the Boyce Thompson Institute at Cornell University, and led by CEO Dr. Jay Farmer, Ascribe discovers and develops natural crop protection products based on small molecules from the soil microbiome. The company’s biopesticide and biostimulant products enable farmers to combat disease and improve plant health without harming the environment.
The company intends to use the funds to continue to expand operations in New York with additional hires in plant science, process chemistry and agronomy, and accelerate commercial development of Phytalix: an environmentally-friendly, broad spectrum biopesticide based on a naturally-occurring small molecule from the soil microbiome. Part of the new financing will be used to expand field trials in wheat, soy, potatoes, and other crops. In the 2021 growing season, Ascribe conducted dozens of trials with Phytalix across North America in collaboration with USDA and university scientists, contract research organizations, and several crop protection firms. Phytalix treatments consistently showed decreased disease pressure and yield benefits equal or better than best-in-class chemical fungicides.