Retail and restaurant tech is a category of agrifood tech startups encompassing technologies and services aimed at making retail food businesses more profitable as well as improving shopper experience at the supermarket, in restaurants and other brick & mortar stores.
Europe's agrifood tech ecosystem raised just 9% of the funding that went to foodtech and agtech startups globally in 2018. But deal activity increased 23% as agrifood tech startups in the region closed a similar number of deals as in the US.
It has taken the team of scientists at Ceradis more than a decade to develop a line of earth-friendly agriculture products. Now, with several on the market, the Dutch company has raised €9 million ($10 million) to commercialize a new biofungicide that prevents crop disease.
This is the largest early-stage agtech funding deal on record in Europe.
The investor syndicate includes S2G Ventures, Middleland Capital, ADM Capital's Cibus Fund, Tysons Ventures, Bunge Ventures, Continental Grain Company, and Kellogg’s Eighteen94 Capital.
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.
Benson Hill Biosystems, the data-led crop genetics discovery and gene editing platform, has raised $60 million in Series C funding in a round led by GV (formerly Google Ventures).
The investment round was led by Viking Global Investors, an American-based hedge fund based in Greenwich, Conn., with participation from Andreessen Horowitz, Upfront Ventures and S2G Ventures.
The "precise and predictable outcomes" of Cibus' gene editing technology are "identical to those that could occur in nature, given enough time," argues the company.
Creadev, the private equity arm of the Mulliez family -- founders of the Auchan chain of department stores in France -- contributed to the round.
AgriProtein is constructing insect factories across the Middle East, Asia and South Africa that use municipal waste as feedstock.
ADM’s Cibus Fund was joined by existing investors GreenSoil Investments, the Israeli agrifood tech fund, and Middleland Capital, the family office-backed agrifood tech VC.
Inscripta is building a business based on selling gene-editing tools, such as instruments, reagents, and software, and in order to create a market for these tools, the company is giving away CRISPR enzymes for free.
Food waste-to-fertilizer technology startup WISErg has raised a $19.2 million Series C round, bringing the company’s total fundraising to $56.6 million.
It was an exciting year in farm technology, to say the least, with several exits and record deals set and then overtaken by even larger deals just weeks or months later. Check out the standout deals of 2017.
Skymet provides climate, weather, and crop analytics to insurance companies, banks, agribusinesses, and public sector institutions in India.
There are a number of key areas of opportunity for agrifood tech startups in Europe as the support and resources available to entrepreneurs increases slowly, write Thomas van den Boezem and Louisa Burwood-Taylor.
Early stage investment in agrifood tech startups reached $4.4 billion in the first half of 2017, posting a 6% year-over-year increase reversing the downward trend of 2016 when agrifood tech investing dropped 17% to $6.9 billion from $8.3 billion in 2015.
Distribution of the product will focus on the US, Canada, and Argentina, where NewLeaf has been successfully piloting the product for three years.