The Encounter Weekly

18 March, 2022

Stay up to date with the most recent news, investments and partnerships regarding the Agrifood tech industry and sustainability.


IPOs, M&As & Investments:

Instant delivery startup Getir announced that it has closed a new $768 million Series E funding round. Following this deal, the company reached a valuation of $11.8 billion.


India’s marketplace Liscious grabs $150 million. The new funding — which is an extension to the $52 million Series F disclosed last year — brings Licious’ all-time raise to $488 million.


Restaurant robotics startup Bear Robotics announced they have raised an $81 million Series B. The round was led by IMM, with participation by Cleveland Avenue.


Infant nutrition start-up Once Upon a Farm has secured $52 million in a Series D funding round that will help fuel the company’s continued expansion, both in retail and online, and support its product innovation efforts.


US food tech company Mori has secured $50 million in a Series B1 funding round, led by venture capital firm Prelude Ventures.

IUNU picks up $24 million in funding, led by Lewis & Clark Ventures, with S2G Ventures, Ceres Partners and Astanor Ventures returning for more. This round will go toward expanding its global footprint, as well as increasing R&D on new products.


Israeli precision agriculture and smart farming company SupPlant announced the completion of a $27 million financing round on Monday.


Farm crowdfunding platform AcreTrader raises $20 million-plus from Drive Capital as an extension of AcreTrader’s Series B round, which reeled in $40 million from lead investor Anthemis Group and others.


Food technology startup Tender Foods, formerly Boston Meats, raised $12 million in seed funding to scale production of its plant-based meat products.

Vence, a US startup that offers ‘virtual fencing’ for ranchers using regenerative ag practices, has secured funding from the venture arms of Merck & Co and oil and gas giant Shell.


Last month, SP Ventures announced its first ‘climate tech’ deal: leading Moss.Earth’s Series A round in a $10 million co-investment syndicate including Acre Venture Partners, Celo, The Craftory, and Jive Investments.

Alt - seafood Israeli startup Plantish announces a $12 million seed funding round that will enable the company to invest in R&D and build a manufacturing facility to help its plans to enter the US market.


Future Crops announces a new investment round led by Tencent to accelerate growth. Future Crops is shaping the future of agriculture and our food system, making it more safe, resilient, and efficient.


Precision fermentation startup MeliBio raised $5.7 million in seed funding to help it expand into foodservice and business-to-business applications.


Zitti raises $4 million to deliver fintech platform to the food industry.


Revolutionary AI platform, Agxio, has closed a £2.1m Pre-Series A round to fund scaling and international expansion.


​​Hong Kong alt-pork startup Good Food Technologies has announced the closure a HK$12 million (approx. US$1.5 million) seed round led by pan-Asian VC Gobi Partners.


Indoor farming company Local Bounti is acquiring rival Hollandia Produce Group, which grows and sells leafy greens under the name of Pete's, for $122.5 million. The transaction is expected to close early in the second quarter.

Zomato and instant delivery startup Blinkit to merge. Sources familiar with the matter say the all-stock deal values Blinkit between $700 million and $750 million.

Ancillary cannabis firm Agrify raises $135 million in additional capital. The publicly-traded company signed a definitive agreement to raise as much as $135 million in a debt financing deal.

GoTo, Indonesia’s biggest start-up, plans to raise up to $1.3bn in an initial public offering. The company raised $1.3bn in a private funding round in November led by the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority that valued the company at $28.5bn, according to people familiar with the deal.

 
News & Trends:

The global food system is under threat as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine puts one of the world’s major breadbaskets in jeopardy. ange of plant-based food items through a collaboration

Japan-based food and biotech giant Ajinomoto Co. has entered a strategic partnership with cultivated meat player SuperMeat to set up a commercially viable supply chain platform for the cell-based industry.

US vertical farming startup Plenty and berry grower Driscoll’s plan to build a new indoor farm completely dedicated to strawberry production.

Japanese food brand 2foods by TWO Inc. has linked up with domestic manufacturing giant Kagome Co. to develop a plant-based egg substitute for a new omurice dish. Dubbed “Ever Egg”, the component is made from vegetables and legumes which are processed to reach the right consistency.

The Green House, a new eatery at Chase Center in San Francisco, offers a range of plant-based food items through a collaboration with food tech company Future Farm.

The Bezos Earth Fund will invest $17 million in global food security-focused research partnership CGIAR‘s Future Seeds plant gene bank.

Germany-based WeissBioTech has launched a complete portfolio of enzymes for winemaking that optimize the principal winemaking applications while fitting with any type of grape.

MISTA members AAK, Chr. Hansen, Givaudan and Ingredion have merged their tech knowledge to co-create a plant-based, high-performance yogurt base made of plant-based proteins, “designer” cultures, protein binders and flavors with unique functional enhancers.

Patagonia Provisions, a marketplace for responsibly sourced food and beverages is releasing a new beer from a regeneratively grown perennial — Kernza Pils — in collaboration with one of the best craft breweries in the world, Dogfish Head.

is a Cultured beef steak innovator Aleph Farms announces the first innovation out of its new incubator and sclaes its product line to include a unique platform for cell-based collagen production.

Koa, the Swiss-Ghanaian start-up, best known for its upcycling of cocoa side streams, has partnered with Seedtrace and MTN Group and launched a blockchain system to ‘disrupt transparency standards’ in cocoa while raising the income of farmers.

In another step forward for the European cultivated meat industry, the government of the Netherlands has passed a motion to legalize the sampling of cell-cultured meat products.

Gousto launches smell training kits as Long COVID sufferers ‘fall out of love with food’ after losing smell and taste. The recipe kit provider has introduced free limited-edition ‘Flavour Saviour’ kits in partnership with the charity AbScent to help consumers ‘retrain their senses and rediscover the joy of mealtimes’.

Nigeria is the second largest investor in food and packaging technology in Africa with 390 million Euro, according to the Germany Machinery Association.

Israeli-based agtech company, Fermata, announced on Thursday its entry into North American markets following three years of R&D and pilot projects testing the performance of the company’s AI platform, Croptimus Pest and Disease, that addresses the challenging rates of crop failure facing commercial greenhouse agriculture.


S2G Ventures, a multi-stage investment firm focused on the food, agriculture, ocean and seafood markets, reveals 10 food and AgTech trends that will shape the future of food in 2022.

In collaboration with its latest partner, Waitrose, Müller is making packaging changes to manage waste that will shape the future of food sustainable food-grade packaging.

DoorDash has introduced the latest in its Main Street Strong series of initiatives: the inaugural DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, an educational program created to advance women-, trans-, immigrant- and people-of-color-owned local consumer packaged goods businesses.