future food asia award

Ag Industry Brief: Future Food Asia Announces Finalists, Nonprofit Files IRS Complaint Against Whole Foods, Humane Society, GAP, more

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Future Food Asia Announces 8 Finalists for FFA 2017

Asia’s first agritech and foodtech startup up competition will take place in Singapore later this month. Here are the eight companies that have been selected to present at the Future Food Asia Award 2017 competition on May 26:

  • Agrint, Israel, has built a solution aimed against the Red Palm Weevil, the most harmful and undetectable pest to Palm and Coconut trees.
  • Bethesda Scientific, Taiwan, uses a microencapsulation technology to protect rice seedlings from pests without generating negative impacts on the ecosystem.
  • Biologiht, Korea, develops and manufactures medical devices that enhance the immunity of animals, including livestock.
  • Doux Matok, Israel, has developed a flavor delivery technology that provides enhanced sweetness or saltiness sensation.
  • Eruvaka Technologies, India, is an aquaculture IoT company.
  • Farm Friend, China, describes itself as the Uber of agricultural drone services.
  • Smart Animal Husbandry Care, Singapore, provides e-traceability capabilities for pig farmers.
  • String Bio, India, applies a biological conversion process to methane gas to manufacture various value added products including single cell protein for animal feed.

Nonprofit Files IRS Complaint Against Whole Foods, Humane Society, GAP

The nonprofit Center for Consumer Freedom has filed a formal complaint with the IRS concerning Whole Foods Market, the Humane Society of the United States, and Global Animal Partnership (GAP), a nonprofit organization run by a Whole Foods employee. The complaint alleges a scheme by which the Humane Society of the United States, on whose board Whole Foods CEO John Mackey sits, is using tax-exempt charitable donations to promote GAP and Whole Foods’ business interests. GAP certifies meat products that are sold at Whole Foods and was founded with Whole Foods seed money. View the complaint here.

Iowa AgriTech Accelerator Seeking Applicants for 2017 Class

The Iowa AgriTech Accelerator is seeking six early-stage companies with an idea, intellectual property or prototype for agricultural innovation to participate in this year’s class, which begins July 10 in Des Moines, Iowa. Click here to apply before July 7.

AgLaunch Announces 2017 Accelerator Companies

The Memphis-based AgLaunch accelerator has announced its 2017 cohort. More than 125 ag startups from across the globe expressed interest in the 2017 AgLaunch Accelerator. These are the chosen three:

  • Microbiometer (Englewood, NJ): Microbiometer is a rapid on-site soil testing tool that measures microbial mass.
  • Persistence Data Mining (San Diego, CA): Using proprietary UAV technology, Persistence Data Mining rapidly develops soil nutrient maps over large tracts of farmland.
  • Kilimo (Cordoba, Argentina): Kilimo provides a decision support tool for irrigation management in broadacre agriculture using satellite, climate, and on a proprietary big data platform.

Applications Open for Session #2 of AcceleRise FoodTech & AgTech Acceleration Program

With its first cohort ending its acceleration phase at the end of April, AcceleRise, France’s first foodtech and agtech acceleration program, is opening applications for its second cohort. A zero equity, not-for-profit program, AcceleRise is open to mature startups at the proof of concept stage, as well as to SMEs facing a growth opportunity. Applicants with an interest to kick-start their European development can be based anywhere, with no obligation to relocate to France. Applications for the second session close on June 12, 2017. Click here for more info.

New Indiana University Grand Challenge Initiative to Tackle Major Environmental Threats to Hoosier Health, Economy

Indiana University has announced a new investment of $55 million targeted at helping the farm state develop what it calls actionable solutions that prepare businesses, farmers, communities and individual Hoosiers for the effects of ongoing environmental change. The initiative, called Prepared for Environmental Change, is the second project funded through IU’s $300 million Grand Challenges Program, which launched in 2015.

AgShift Announces New Head of Technology

Dr. Amitava Bhaduri has joined AgShift, an ag data management company, as head of technology. Bhaduri will lead technology advancements and platform improvements for AgShift. According to the company, he has an extensive background leading enterprise level companies through software development, systems architecture, spearheading innovations across machine learning, data science and the Internet of Things. Read more here.

New Spending Bill Allocates $3m to Help FDA Teach Consumers about GMOs

Congress recently passed a new spending bill that allocates $3 million to the FDA to help educate consumers about GMOs. The endeavor will cover topics like food safety, economics, environmental impact, and nutrition. Read more here.

Calysta Ships First Batch of FeedKind Protein Samples

Calysta, an innovative animal feed company, announced that it successfully produced over four metric tons of commercially-representative FeedKind protein for distribution to customers and partners around the world. These samples will support market development in the EU, the US, Japan, Southeast Asia, China, and Australia. FeedKind protein is a family of natural, sustainable, and traceable feed ingredients for fish, livestock, and pets that are being developed to help meet the world’s growing demand for food.

Other News That’s Fit to Chew

  • The USDA has delayed enactment of its animal welfare standards for the National Organic Program, reports The Daily Intake.
  • Conagra employees have saved more than $5 million through sustainability efforts, reports FoodDIVE.
  • A consumer interest group is suing Mott’s claiming that it’s ‘natural’ applesauce contains pesticides, reports FoodDIVE.
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