Here are the 15 startups chosen to pitch to FoodBytes! in London this November

September 23, 2019

Remember, remember! The sixth and seventh of November!

These two dates will mark the autumnal moment when fifteen fledgling agri- and foodtech startups try to make an explosive impression on FoodBytes! by Rabobank at Victoria House in London.

It’ll be a little bit like Britain’s bonfire night on the fifth, a night remembering Guy Fawkes’ bid to blow up Parliament: there’ll be plenty of pitching pyrotechnics, with many a dream of rampant disruption.

Who will prevail, and which ideas will end up tossed on the bonfire? The fifteen start-ups – selected via these criteria – will each have 3 minutes to make their case. Their judges will be Solveiga Pakstaite of Mimica; Adam Anders of Anterra Capital; Kirsty Macdonald of JamJar Investments; Great British Chefs Founder Ollie Lloyd; and Nick Fereday, Executive Director of Food & Consumer Trends at Rabobank.

“Ever since we launched in 2015, I’ve been pleasantly surprised that there has been no let up in the quality of the applicants seeking to make a profound impact and change on the food ecosystem,” said Fereday, in a note sent to AFN revealing how 157 applicants across 38 countries and five continents were whittled down to a fateful fifteen.


From farm waste-based fertilisers to 3D printing for personalised nutrition and labelling solutions to extend fruit shelf-life, the 15 startups were selected to pitch through stakeholder scoring. Plant-based nutrition, future farming technology and circular supply chain solutions were among the dominant themes.

The fifteen companies are in the running to win one of three awards – “Judge’s Choice,” “People’s Choice,”and “Highly Commended.” Winners will get to pitch and network at Rabobank’s European Advisory Board Meeting in France in April 2020; they will receive 8 hours of tailor-made mentor sessions with Rabobank specialists.

In addition, they will get business consultation services from FoodBytes! sponsors, including branding and legal consultation and go-to-market advice. The support here could come from the likes of Compass Group UK & Ireland, Saputo Dairy UK (formerly Dairy Crest) and Coca Cola European Partners, as well as Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC), DLL and Watson Farley & Williams LLP.

So, live on the FoodBytes! London stage this November will be:

Sustainable Consumer Packaged Food (CPG) 

  • Seaweed & Co. – producers of seaweed ingredients and products for the food and nutrition markets which boast a mix of health, nutrition, flavour and sustainability benefits.
  • Borrago – a non-alcoholic botanical spirit with all the flavours and theatre of a cocktail, just without the alcohol.  The company’s namesake ‘borage’ is also known as the bee flower and they have given away over 100,000 borage seeds to date, as part of their commitment to help save bees.
  • Plant Pops – makes award-winning snacks from popped Lotus flowers (and other grains and seeds) which have benefits for the consumer, the environment and the communities that grow them.
  • Else Nutrition – 100% plant-based alternative to dairy-based baby nutrition.
  • Element Packaging – creates packaging solutions from bamboo paper, plant starch and other sustainable polymers for the Food2Go, Retail, Travel and Fashion sectors, which are fully compostable or biodegradable.

Agtech:

  • Computomics – unlocks the diversity of biological life to enable data-driven decisions which can accelerate sustainable agricultural development, with a focus on biotech, breeding and indoor farming.
  • N2 Applied – aims to improve global food production by adding nutrient value to manure and enabling farmers to replace mineral fertiliser with an environmentally-friendly fertiliser
  • Co2i / DryGro – has developed a new way to grow an animal feed protein ingredient called Lemna, a supplement to soybean meal
  • LLeaf – technology that is best described by the company name, an acronym for Luminescent Light Emitting Agriculture Films. Lleaf technology will help the world to increase food yield by improving the light that reaches plants
  • Trellis – allows the key players — growers, manufacturers, and retailers — to get insights from supply chain AI to accurately predict crop production and yield, supply chain fluctuations and market trends, resulting in lower costs, improved quality, and reduced waste.

Food Tech:

  • Stix Fresh – peelable stickers for fruit which help to keep them fresh –  the all-natural way to safely extend the shelf life of fruit by up to 14 days
  • Fresh Check – a company promising a simpler, faster and low-cost method of performing hygiene testing with colour change spray to warn users about bacterial, chemical or organic contamination.
  • Zero Waste Biotech – developed the Aero-D machine which converts food waste into clean renewable energy, enabling a circular economy
  • NOURISH3D – developed a patented 3D printing technology which allows them to combine 7 different active ingredients into personalised nutrition stacks, based on consumers’ lifestyle and goals
  • Redefine Meat – their technology produces animal-free meat, promising the same appearance, texture and flavor of animal meat, from natural and sustainable ingredients
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