Editor’s Note: Mareese Keane, the platform director of agtech accelerator THRIVE presented the Animal AgTech Landscape Map at the inaugural Swine Innovation Summit last week. The 150-strong event took place in partnership with the National Pork Board and ahead of the first Forbes AgTech Summit in Indiana. Five THRIVE cohort members relevant to the swine industry presented in a dedicated Swine Startup Showcase. Here Keane highlights the key features of the map.
The National Pork Board (NPB) is focused on identifying emerging technology solutions designed to address the challenges and operational needs of swine producers across the value chain of pork production. SVG Ventures-THRIVE has partnered with the NPB as its innovation partner to develop a targeted pipeline of livestock and animal health startups that support that mission along with their focus for providing a healthy, safe, environmentally sustainable product for the food supply chain. SVG has prepared a landscape map of animal agtech companies that reflects technology companies that are building or have built a solution for specific markets. Some that are designed for other animals will have crossover into swine production applications.
“Changing food production practices also includes technology that is disrupting not only how food is produced, but how it is transported, presented and sold to unknowing consumers,” says Andy Brudtkuhl, National Pork Board’s Director of Emerging Technology. “Understand, this is a trillion-dollar industry and it has never been more important to be ahead of emerging trends.”
The map has been constructed to segment the technology companies in two ways:
- Vertically by animal type. ‘All Market Animals’ is a broad category for companies who have either built a platform or product for general animal use, or companies who have more than one solution, targeted at more than one animal. Bovine, Swine and Poultry are currently only targeted at one animal group.
- Horizontally, across the value chain, with the On-Farm category segmented further into different on-farm use cases.
Additionally, we have overlaid the NPB’s core mission to support people, pigs and the planet by segmenting into Animal Well-being, Environment and People & Community. Solutions that make producers lives easier through better data management are included in People & Community.
It should be noted that some companies could potentially be applicable to more than one category but for simplicity, have been mapped into a single category.
This map represents 95 startups with a known investment total of over $500 million. The start-ups range in stage from pre-seed to companies with significant growth and revenue. Of the 95, the investment received is known for only 59. This could be due to some early-stage companies being funded by friends and family rounds, or in some cases, the investor may be a private investment by another corporation. Analysis of known funding indicates a large outlier in the feed category for poultry with a $122 million investment in AgriProtein. This investment outweighs all other known investments by a factor of two. Overall, the categories of feed, health and data management are active and well-funded within the start-up ecosystem.
Figure 2: Total Known Investment per Animal Category
Figure 3: Total Known Investment Across the Value Chain of Animal Production
Although not exhaustive, the landscape map reflects the current state of Animal AgTech in 2019. If you are building a company in animal agtech and do not see your company on this map, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org