First Venture Technologies Corp.

First Venture Technologies Corp.

January 21, 2008 09:30 ET

First Venture Announces the Initialization of a $2,600,000 Yeast Commercialization Project With Support From Atlantic Innovation Fund

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Jan. 21, 2008) - First Venture Technologies Corp. (TSX VENTURE:FEB) ("First Venture" or the "Company") is pleased to report that it has received approval for $1,750,000 in funding from the Atlantic Innovation Fund ("AIF"). The funds are granted in support of a $2,600,000 project by First Venture to develop improved methods for the production of its new functionally-enhanced commercial yeast products. These yeast products are designed to substantially reduce the formation of a known carcinogen, ethyl carbamate, in wines and other fermented beverages and food.

The project being undertaken by First Venture is designed to develop systems that can fast-track the development and production of functionally-enhanced commercial yeasts and increase the speed with which the Company will be able to bring these products to the commercial market place. This new project will also allow the company to develop further in-house expertise that will shorten the pipeline of its future products to commercialization. This new project will be underway concurrently with the production scale-up work already underway with the PEI Food Technology Centre.

This project will cover the entire process of functionally-enhanced yeast strain development from strain identification to functional-enhancement as well as down-stream pilot plant production of active dry yeast. The Company will also be establishing Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), Good Laboratory Practices (GLP). It is the Company's goal, as a result of this project, to develop its own Standard Operating Procedures for development of new yeasts; fermentation scale up processes; specific evaluations of manufactured yeast; downstream processing and product formulation; and the complete development of 15 functionally-enhanced yeast strains for five product market targets. Initial products resulting from this project will increase and enhance First Venture's existing urea-degrading yeast products that are currently targeted at global markets for wine, sake and fortified spirits manufacturing.

To effectively implement this project, First Venture is establishing an Atlantic division for new product development and product manufacturing based in Charlottetown, PEI. This division will collaborate closely with local technical institutions, such as the Food Technology Centre and the Institute for Nutrisciences and Health (INH/NRC); and will focus on applied research with embedded research staff at the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods & Nutraceuticals at the University of Manitoba, as well as research initiatives from the University of California, Davis and the University of British Columbia.

"The Atlantic Innovation Fund focuses on strategic investments in research and development projects in areas such as natural and applied sciences and humanities that are explicitly linked to the development and commercialization of technology-based products, processes or services in Atlantic Canada," noted Geoff Lee, President of First Venture. "It is a vote of confidence for us to have the AIF recognize First Venture's innovative technology and to support the Company's yeast commercialization program - as we progress from the research and development phase to production and sales. First Venture is pleased to anticipate establishing its product manufacturing base in Charlottetown, and looks forward to participating as a good member of the local business community."

First Venture received official notification of the AIF's investment at a ceremony, with The Honourable Peter G. MacKay, P.C, Q.C, M.P., Minister of National Defense and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, held in Charlottetown, PEI on January 21, 2008.

The AIF funds are conditionally repayable based on the commercial success of the AIF funded project.


Howard Louie, Chairman & CEO


First Venture Technologies is a functional foods and biological health products company that develops and commercializes advanced yeast products, and other novel biological products, for the food and the health care industries. The company is currently commercializing a platform yeast technology that substantially reduces the formation of a known carcinogen (WHO Group 2a classification - probably carcinogenic to humans, and a known animal carcinogen), ethyl carbamate (or urethane) from wines and other fermented beverages and foods. First Venture has licensed the exclusive worldwide rights to this technology from The University of British Columbia (UBC). The company is expanding the development of next generation products in this area, as well as evaluating new yeast based technologies with broad commercial market applications. In addition First Venture, through its wholly owned subsidiary Phycobiologics Inc., is developing a platform of proprietary biological products for the animal and aquaculture health care markets utilizing proprietary science in the field of micro-algae.

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The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency's Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) is an initiative through with the Government of Canada is making strategic investments aimed at increasing Atlantic Canada's innovation capacity. The purpose of the AIF is to: (i) increase R&D being carried out in Atlantic Canada research facilities leading to the launch of new products, processes and services; (ii) improving the region's capacity to commercialize R&D; (iii) strengthen the region's innovation system by supporting R&D and commercialization partnerships and alliances among private sector enterprises, universities, research institutions and other organizations in Atlantic Canada; and (iv) enhance the region's ability to access national R&D programs. The Atlantic Innovation Fund focuses on R&D projects in the area of natural and applied sciences, as well as in social sciences, humanities, arts and culture, where these are explicitly linked to the development and commercialization of technology-based products, processes or services.

The TSX Venture Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

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