FluroSat, an Australian remote sensing, and crop health software startup, has acquired ProductionWise, the digital agriculture platform of GrainGrowers, Australia’s leading grain farmer membership group.
ProductionWise, a subscription precision agriculture software service, was developed by GrainGrowers for over 10 years in consultation with its members.
The first wave of European food tech companies has mostly focused on building technology and logistics platforms to deliver food to consumers. And while the plethora of new food e-commerce options across the globe has caused investor fatigue and failures, the five leading food delivery companies in Europe are now worth seven times more than their combined investment, an awesome feat, according to Niccolo Manzoni, partner of agrifood tech investment firm Five Seasons Ventures.
Clear Labs, a Californian startup using next-generation sequencing (NGS) to test food for dangerous pathogens like Salmonella, has raised $21 million in an extension to its Series B round.
The advent of NGS, most notably developed by Illumina for cancer genomics and newborn screening, brought down the cost of genetic screening in the healthcare industry, as well as the time tests took, and now the same is happening for food.
The startup, which has focused on the cosmetics industry for its first product line is set to develop products for the nutraceutical, food and beverage industries too, such as gelatin, a form of collagen often found in sweets.
Brian Halweil was recently named portfolio manager at Almanac Investments, a relatively new $30 million agrifood tech venture capital fund. Almanac was founded by David Barber, the co-founder of the renowned Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture and Blue Hill Farm in upstate New York in January of this year.
Since raising the first round of Series A funding, SafeTraces gained particular traction in tracing tropical oils to determine the sustainability of the sourcing practices, and also tracing ammonium nitrate fertilizers that can be used in explosives.
The World Bee Project Hive Network will start monitoring beehives using sensing technologies from two UK startups -- BuzzBox and Arnia -- which will transmit the data they collect into the cloud for analysis.
We can spend a lot of money on feed rations, but if the animal’s gut integrity is wrong because of bacteria in the water line, that nutrition is wasted and is also a welfare issue, says Barney Kay, head of agriculture at Tesco.
Adrian Percy is the former head of R&D at Bayer, recently stepping down and becoming the company’s technology ambassador. Ahead of his speaking slot at World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit in London next week, we caught up with Percy to find out more about the role and his views on the development of the agritech startup market.
“Pivot Bio is addressing one of the largest sources of GHGs on the planet – the potent nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide emissions associated with the use of synthetic fertilizers,” said Carmichael Roberts of Breakthrough Energy Ventures.
The fledgling startup industry looks different to other global markets with the vast majority of innovation and investment ($1.7 billion) taking place downstream; but China’s agrifood startup scene has something the US market does not.
According to the report, some $85 million worth of farmland in its first fund — Vital Farmland LP — generated a financial return of 67%, but also $21.4 million in ecosystem service value, which accrues to the surrounding communities and environment.