In a candid sit-down with Irina Miller, CEO of Daisy Lab, Outset Ventures explores the innovative journey of this precision fermentation pioneer in the dairy industry. Irina shares insights into Daisy Lab’s mission to revolutionise dairy production with sustainable, cow-free dairy-identical proteins. Through this dialogue, we uncover the challenges, technological breakthroughs, and the vision driving Daisy Lab towards a sustainable future, highlighting the company’s commitment to ethical practices and environmental stewardship.

From the Outset Q&A with Daisy Lab CEO Irina Miller

by From the Outset | Melissa Grey

Daisy Lab Image by Melissa Grey from DMG Digital Advertising for Outset Ventures
What inspired the creation of Daisy Lab?

“Daisy Lab is probably a product of frustration rather than inspiration. Emily, Nikki and I (Irina) were frustrated with the status quo in the dairy industry and saw precision fermentation as a better solution.”

What is precision fermentation?

“Precision fermentation involves giving microbes extra genetic instructions to produce desired compounds, such as dairy-identical proteins, in controlled conditions.”

What is Daisy Lab's main focus?

“Our focus is on making dairy-identical proteins without cows using microbes through precision fermentation.”

What were the initial challenges Daisy Lab faced?

“Early on, we faced challenges like securing contracts with universities, finding suitable students, and deciding on the best organisms for our research.”

What backgrounds do the founders of Daisy Lab come from?

“My background is in business consulting and bioinformatics, which, combined with Nikki’s qualifications and expertise in Molecular biology, Microbiology, Nanopore and Illumina sequencing and Emily’s qualifications and expertise Genetics- brings a diverse skill set to Daisy Lab.”


What makes developing dairy-identical proteins using microbes challenging?

“The challenges include selecting the right microbes, ensuring the genetic instructions are correctly incorporated, and overcoming protein processing limitations.”

How does Daisy Lab's technology compare to other alternatives in the market?

“While direct comparisons are challenging, we’ve made significant progress in scaling yields and developing a clean fermentation process that simplifies downstream processing.”

What are the main competitive advantages of Daisy Lab in the dairy market?

“Our technology allows for cleaner fermentation liquid and simpler purification processes, setting us apart from competitors.”

How does Daisy Lab ensure product quality and consistency?

“We replicate the same processes to ensure consistency, with our end-to-end processing showing consistent results.”

How has the traditional dairy industry responded to Daisy Lab?

“We’ve received positive reception, indicating a readiness for change and openness to sustainable methods of dairy production.”

What is Daisy Lab's strategy for market integration?

“Our strategy involves education, collaboration, and showcasing our products’ environmental and ethical benefits to appeal to consumers and partners.”

What challenges does Daisy Lab anticipate in scaling up and expanding market reach?

“Scaling up presents more challenges than expanding market reach due to the novel nature of our product and the need for strategic partnerships.”

How does Daisy Lab plan to scale up and expand its market reach?

“Scaling up is challenging, but we plan to leverage our novel qualities, such as reduced emissions and ethical production, to engage the market effectively.”

What is the anticipated timeline for Daisy Lab's market entry?

“We anticipate market entry through IP partnerships within 18 to 24 months, depending on our development progress and the establishment of a pilot plant.”

How has Outset Ventures supported Daisy Lab?

“Outset Ventures has been instrumental, especially in facilitating the expansion of our lab space, which significantly accelerated our R&D efforts.”

What makes Daisy Lab an attractive investment opportunity?

“Daisy Lab offers solid technology, a proven track record, capital efficiency, and significant market potential in sustainable food production.”

What are Daisy Lab's short-term and long-term objectives?

“In the short term, we’re focusing on product development and fundraising. Long-term, we aim to scale our technology for broader market distribution.”

How does Daisy Lab maintain a competitive edge?

“We maintain our edge by continuously innovating, focusing on capital efficiency, and quickly adapting to market and technological advancements.”

Can you share a significant milestone for Daisy Lab?

“Scaling our yields by a factor of 20 in the last 12 months has been a significant achievement, showcasing our technological capabilities.”

How does Daisy Lab view its role in the global sustainability movement?

“We see ourselves as pioneers in creating a more sustainable and ethical alternative to traditional dairy, aligning with global sustainability goals.”

What has been the most rewarding experience for you at Daisy Lab?

“Reflecting on our journey and realizing the significant impact we’ve managed to achieve has been incredibly rewarding for me personally.”

How does Daisy Lab foster innovation and resilience?

“We encourage making mistakes, asking questions, and brainstorming solutions, emphasizing progress and learning.”

What advice would you offer to aspiring entrepreneurs in tech or sustainability?

“My advice is to pursue your passion for the end goal. This passion will guide you through challenges and help you exceed expectations.”

If you’re a wholesale investor interested in what Daisy Lab is doing and want to get involved in sustainable innovation, Outset Ventures has something for you. See how your investment can help change the way we produce dairy for a greener, more ethical future. Check out Outset Ventures for Investors to find out how you can be part of this exciting journey in food technology.