CALGARY, ALTA. — Above Food Corp. and Bite Acquisition Corp. finalized their merger June 28 following special meetings of the two companies’ shareholders. The combined company, to be known as Above Food Ingredients, Inc., started trading on the Nasdaq exchange July 1 using the ticker symbol ABVE.

Calgary-based Above Food is a manufacturer of plant-based ingredients and consumer products containing oats, chickpeas, peas, lentils and fava beans. The newly combined company will continue to be led by Lionel Kambeitz, founder, president, chief executive officer and executive chairman.

Kambeitz said the company has strengthened its position in the industry and planned to use its “seed-to-fork” platform to help tackle the growing challenges pressuring global food security.

“With ample capacity across our existing assets to more than double our revenue, we are ready to capitalize on the tremendous market opportunity that is being supported by powerful secular trends around plant-based foods, supply chain traceability, and sustainable practices,” he said.

Kambeitz called Above Food a “scaled and profitable operator” that services a base of more than 260 customers with a footprint of more than 35,000 retail points of distribution.

New York-based Bite Acquisition is a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), or a corporation designed to take companies public without going through the initial public offering process.

Bite Acquisition was expected to pay about $44 million to complete the deal, which Kambeitz said would be used to fund a continued 61% annual growth rate at Above Food, according to a May 2023 CBC News article. He noted he would be looking for small acquisitions to expand and make existing facilities more efficient.

Since its founding in 2019, Above Food has made a number of acquisitions, including the recent purchase of Brotalia (Foody’s), a Spain-based manufacturer of plant-based meat and seafood alternatives; the GoodWheat brand of wheat products from Arcadia Biosciences in May of this year; Sonic Milling and Northern Quinoa Production Corp. (NorQuin) in 2022; and Atlantic Natural Foods, Farmer Direct Organic Foods and Only Oats and Culcherd in 2021.

The merger between Above Food and Bite Acquisition took longer than expected to finalize. In February, the New York Stock Exchange said it planned to delist Bite’s common stock because of failure to complete the merger within the specified time frame. The SPAC’s shareholders subsequently approved a deadline extension to Aug. 17.

Shares of Above Food Ingredients fell during its first trading day, starting at $6.45 at the opening bell July 1 and ending at $4.62 by the close.