The Encounter Weekly

5 - 10 June, 2022

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



IPOs, M&As & Investments:



Cloud kitchen startup Curefoods has raised $50 Mn in a Series C funding round from new and existing investors. The funds will be used to expand for geographical expansion and new acquisitions.

US-based alternative meat startup Artemys Foods has rebranded to SCiFi Foods, officially emerging from stealth mode, and has closed a $22 million Series A round led by leading global VC Andreessen Horowitz.


Agrotools, a Brazilian-based technology and intelligence company for agribusiness, raised $21 million (BRL 100 million) to value the company at around $94 million, according to the company.


Israel’s Brevel has closed a successful seed funding round, scooping $8.4 million during the raise. Participating investors included FoodHack, Good Startup VC, Tet Ventures and Nevateam Ventures, amongst others.

Cell based dairy startup Brown Foods, bags $2.36 million in seed funding. The capital will be used to continue in developing the bio-process and scaling and product development.


Spanish startup Cocuus has raised €2.5 million in its Pre Series A funding round to scale its 3D bioprinting technology for the production of alternative proteins.

Austrian foodtech startup Revo Foods has secured a €2.2 million grant from the Austrian Research Promotion Agency. The equity-free award was granted to help Revo continue its 3D printed seafood developments.


Bengaluru-based Alt Co. has confirmed a $1 million raise led by undisclosed major investors from Singapore, the Middle East and India.


Food upcycling startup, Wastelink raises $100K in Seed Funding. The capital raised will be used to expand across India and scale up their supplier platform capability.


Virgin Group’s UK-based digital financial services provider Virgin Money has launched a £200 million ($251 million) Agri E Fund, the first of its kind dedicated to supporting UK farmers with green loans.


Japan’s Norinchukin Bank invested in AgFunder’s $100m agrifood tech fund.


Foodtech community platform FoodHack has raised $1m to launch HackVentures, enabling angels to invest in climate focused solutions through its investment platform.

Restaurant tech ordering system platform Lunchbox has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire NovaDine, an enterprise digital ordering provider for multi-unit restaurant chains.

Ingredients company AAK Foodservice acquires ForA:Butter a plant-based butter made from aquafaba, a liquid leftover from cooking chickpeas.


Foster Farms has been acquired by Atlas Holdings, the private equity firm said in a statement. The purchase price was not publicly disclosed.


Cox Enterprises makes undisclosed “strategic” investment in CEA company Mucci Farms. The partnership means greater variety of CEA-grown produce and a significant expansion to Cox’s existing business.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)announces significant investments to support urban agriculture, including $43.1 million for grants and cooperative agreements as well as six new urban county committees to help deliver key USDA programs to urban producers.



 

News & Trends:



Alternative meat firm More Meat has cited rising local food ingredient prices and the prevention of food waste as major drivers behind the creation of its ready-to-cook (RTC) range, a format that is still at the early stages of growth within Thailand’s plant-based sector.

Tel Aviv-based food-tech startup SuperMeat, received a grant from the Israel Innovation Authority to establish an open high-throughput screening system that will optimize feed ingredients (cell media), supplements, and cell scaffolds for cultivated meat, which will in turn aid the entire industry achieve commercial viability.

Remilk, an Israeli company developing animal-free dairy, has obtained self-affirmed GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status, in accordance with FDA requirements, signalling the entrance of its non-animal, real-dairy products in the USA.

General Mills invests $3 million in regenerative agriculture. The CPG is working with Ecosystem Services Market Consortium (ESMC) to expand the Eco-Harvest program that rewards farmers for “beneficial outcomes” for regen ag practices.

The Bayer Trendlines Ag Innovation Fund and the Trendlines Group established TierraSpec, a new venture focused on real-time remote measurement and validation of carbon sequestration in agricultural soil to allow the issue of carbon credits and soil health monitoring.

French alt dairy startup Bon Vivant has announced a major new deal with European biotech leader Abolis. The companies have formed a strategic partnership to produce precision fermentation-based animal-free dairy products on an industrial scale.


Starbucks India has announced it is partnering with domestic alt-protein producer Imagine Meats on a range of vegan menu items to be served at the coffee chain’s stores.


Laughing Man Coffee, a coffee brand founded by actor Hugh Jackman, has opened Laughing V cafe in NYC’s exclusive Tribeca neighbourhood, the company’s first vegan business venture.

Tetra Pak has announced a host of new research collaborations and programs to accelerate further efforts to address global food systems challenges.

Kroger has launched a digital farmers market pilot in Atlanta in partnership with Market Wagon, an online ordering and delivery service for food from local farmers and artisan food producers.

Swedish appliance manufacturer Electrolux thinks the answer is yes and, to that end, has launched an ambitious new kitchen system concept to help us get there.

Relentless energy and fertilizer prices are strangling greenhouse food producers across Europe. Farmers are dealing with tripled energy prices that get worse during temporary price crunches.

Over the last 20 years, eating locally produced food has become synonymous with eating more ethically, healthily, and sustainably.

Accentuated appetites for foods fortified with functional benefits is growing the commercial potential for protein-boosted snacks into new product segments. These findings are evidenced in new market analysis published by ingredient supplier Glanbia Nutritionals.