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The FreshToHome team. Image credit: FreshToHome

The Week in AgriFoodTech: Pure Salmon nabs $507m, FreshToHome bags $104m, more layoffs for agrifood

February 23, 2023

This week, Amazon backs India’s FreshToHome and Pure Salmon inked a whopping $507 million deal with Saudi Arabia’s government. Layoffs continue, while regulators in Finland approve the use of “burger patty” in marketing plant-based meat products.


Foodtech funding

🇦🇪 🇸🇦 Pure Salmon secures $507 million to build aquaculture salmon farms in Saudi Arabia. The investments will come from the country’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources. (The Fish Site)

🇮🇳 Fish and meat eGrocer FreshToHome nets $104 million Series D to. Amazon’s Smbhav Venture Fund led the round with participation from Investcorp & others. (Business Today)

🇧🇪 Ingredient company Paleo raises $12.7 million Series A for its protein ingredients. The round was led by DSM Venturing and Planet A Ventures (The Spoon)

🇺🇸 AgFunder and Toyota Ventures back growth-medium producer Future Fields. The latter will use the $11.2 million seed extension to build a production facility (AFN) [Disclosure: AFN’s parent company is AgFunder.]

🇺🇸 Wild Microbes secures $3.3 million pre-seed round for precision fermentation. The round was led by Climate Capital with participation from Freeflow Ventures & others. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Better Sour raises an oversubscribed $1 million pre-seed from undisclosed investors. The funding will support the launch of its gummy candy. (Nosh)

Source Ag founders
Source Ag co-founders Rien Kamman (left) and Ernst van Bruggen (right). Image credit: Source Ag

Agtech funding

🇳🇱 Source.ag closes $23 million Series A to expand its artificial intelligence (AI) system for greenhouse growers. Agrifoodtech VC Astanor Ventures led the round. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Alternative materials startup Loliware raises $15.4 million pre-Series A. L CattertonAlumni Ventures Group & others participated. (AFN

🇦🇺 SwarmFarm raises A$12 million ($8.3 million) Series A round for its autonomous farming platform. Conexus Venture Capital‘s Emmertech fund led the round. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Climate intelligence company CarbonCloud raises $7.9 million Series A. Cusp Capital and Peak Capital co-led the round. (Silicon Canals)

🇨🇦 Swap Robotics bags $7 million to automate vegetation cutting using solar. The round was led by SOLV Energy and included SOSV’s HAX and some angels. (Solar Magazine)

🇺🇸 Robigo lands $6.85 million seed round for its crop protection solutions. The round was led by Congruent Ventures with Good Growth Capital and & others. (Robigo)

🇫🇷 Carbon Maps nets $4.2 million pre-seed round from Breega and Samaipata. Funding will go towards Europe expansion, team expansion and strengthening its platform. (Silicon Canals)

🇺🇸 Green chemistry startup P2 Science raises undisclosed round. Lewis & Clark AgriFood led the round with participation from existing investors. (PR Newswire)

ProfilePrint’s portable scanner for food grading. Image credit: ProfilePrint

M&A, IPOs & partnerships

🇺🇸 Zymtronix, Ginkgo Bioworks partner to produce enzymes for cell-free bio-manufacturing. The partnership will combine Zymtronix’s cell-free processes tech with Gingko’s enzyme engineering and strain expression tech. (PR Newswire)

🇺🇸 Restaurant tech company Toast acquires display and drive-thru tech provider Delphi. The deal will see Toast strengthen its service offering for drive-thrus. (Restaurant Dive)

🇳🇱 Major Netherlands institutions launch masterplan for a protein transition in Netherlands. They include  Wageningen University & Research, the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture & several others (Wageningen University)

🇺🇸 Consumer goods company Starco Brands acquires “complete nutrition” brand Soylent. Soylent will operate as a separate business unit within Starco. (AFN)

🇸🇬 🇬🇹 ProfilePrint and Anacafé, the Guatemalan national coffee association, form partnership. The two will deploy AI tech to more than 125,000 Guatemalan coffee farmers. (Daily Coffee News

V2food
Image credit: V2food

Other news

🇺🇸 Impossible Foods to lay off 132 workers in April. This follows a previous staff cut amidst a struggling alt-meat industry. (Food Dive)

🇰🇷 Agtech startup GreenLabs to lay off staff in restructuring process. The startup is also facing difficulty in fundraising, after closing a $140 million Series C in 2022. (TechCrunch)

🇦🇺 Plant-based meat producer V2food’s CEO steps down amidst manufacturing plant closure. The startup says it wasn’t the right to have the plant, which cost $20 million to set up. (Vegconomist)

🇳🇴 World’s first fish farm that cultivates both salmon and kelp launches. The farm will use salmon waste to grow the kelp. (The Fish Site)

🇦🇪 8X Ventures to invest $20 million in MENA’s climate tech and cleantech startups. An additional $5 million will go to active startups based in the Middle East. (Techloy)

🇫🇮 Finland allows the name “burger patty” to be used in marketing plant-based products. Startups are however banned from using the term “plant-based meat”. (FFCR)

🇺🇸 The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) releases draft guidance on on labeling for plant-based milks. The milk lobby has slammed the guidance for its “circular logic.” (AFN)

🇺🇸 🇧🇷 Animal protein producer JBS appeals a recommendation on climate claims. The BBB National Programs National Advertising Division (NAD) recommends JBS stop certain “net zero” claims. (AFN)

🇺🇸 Biotech company Calysta granted GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status for its FeedKind protein. FeedKind will be used in the US in salmonid feeds. (Feed Strategy

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