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The Encounter Weekly

6- 12 August, 2022

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

IPOs, M&As & Investments:

Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a climate-focused VC firm linked to some of Earth’s wealthiest individuals, has joined a $44 million bet on solar startup Terabase Energy.

Israel’s smart shopping cart technology developer Shopic has raised $35 million in a Series B funding. The capital will be used for overall expansion.

Restaurant tech startup PreciTaste bags a $24 million Series A round. Melitas Ventures and Cleveland Avenue co-led the investment; the CEOs of Burger King and McDonald’s and Enlightened Hospitality Investments, the fund co-founded by Shake Shack CEO Danny Meyer also participated

PetTech startup KatKin has just secured about €21.6 million for its platform aiming to bring fresh and healthy food to cats worldwide. Based in London, the cat food company is taking on a growing market and scaling fast.

International AgTech innovator, Dimitra announces a $20 million capital commitment by GEM DIGITAL LIMITED to further develop their platform, increase user-adoption and expand the utility of the ecosystem.

US non-alcoholic beverage retailer, Boisson, has raised a $12 million seed round, which was co-led by Connect Ventures and Blue Scorpion Investments.

Charlestown-based robotics company Dexai Robotics has raised $6.7 million in equity funding just a few months after its food preparation robot Alfred made its restaurant industry debut.

Indian marketplace Farmley has just raised $6 million in a Series A round led by DSG Consumer Partners, and Delhi-based investor Alkemi Growth Capital. The funding will help with channel expansion, H&R and further building its brand.

Singapore-based ProfilePrint, a food ingredient analysis startup, has raised an undisclosed amount of series A1 funding from US-based agrifood giant Cargill.

African startup Vori has secured $5.7 million in funding. This year, the digital B2B wholesale app has raised even more capital to disrupt the grocery industry.

Produze, a UAE-based agricultural technology start-up, raised $2.6 million in a seed funding round that it will use to expand its operations and promote food security in the Middle East.

AgTech and robotics startup Muddy Machines has received £1.5M in seed funding. The funds will be used in continuing to develop a robotic platform, to strengthen the team and build capacity to deal with increased technological adoption.

Alt protein startup Novel Farms arms itself with $1.4 million in SAFE notes, or simple agreement for future equity as it “successfully cultivated the world’s first slaughter-free pork loin that displays the marbling and texture of a real muscle cut.”

Indian startup Organic Kitchen has raised $1 million in its seed funding round. The funds will be used to build technology, develop consumer and farmer apps, and expand its range of products to over 250 certified organic fruits, vegetables and groceries.

Icelandic startup Loki Foods has raised a pre-seed $650,000 to develop alternative seafood products. The funds will be used for operations and improvements.

California based startup Impact Food recently closed a $500,000 round to create a scalable food technology platform for plant based seafood.

Morocco’s UM6P Ventures recently invested in two agrifoodtech startups Climate Crop, a genetic editing company, and Akorn Technology, a producer of natural, edible and non-GMO coatings for fresh produce.

Egypt’s restaurant tech platform startup BONBELL has closed an initial funding round for $350,000 through a Canadian Angel investor, to help further develop the App services and achieve a level of growth in regard to user count and daily orders.

MTY Food and BBQ entered into a definitive merger agreement wherein the former will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of the latter for cash consideration of $17.25/BBQ share representing total transaction value of ~$200M.

Dairy-free yogurt brand Lavva announces it has been acquired by its lead operating partner, Next in Natural.

Funds & Accelerators

Farm Credit Canada (FCC) has signed on to be the lead investor in The51's Food and AgTech Fund, focused on investing in underrepresented founders transforming the business of food and agriculture.

Western Growers and S2G Ventures are now accepting applications for the 2022 AgSharks Competition. Agrifood tech startups will be able to get a $250K investment if chosen.

JV, Partnerships & Grants

Agri-food giant Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) has joined forces with Asia Sustainable Foods Platform to create a new firm called ScaleUp Bio.

ADM and Benson Hill have entered a long-term strategic partnership to scale innovative soy ingredients to help meet the rapidly growing demand for plant-based proteins.

Market Kurly, a South Korea-based online grocery startup, is bringing its services to Singapore, Bloomberg reported. The company will sell its products on RedMart, the grocery service of Alibaba-owned Lazada

News & Trends:

The ERS indicates that increasing incentives for organic grain production in the U.S. may help reduce synthetic fertilizer use and import dependency while increasing soil health and generating farmer income.

A new report finds that 70 percent of Asian food companies across the world’s largest egg market are shifting away from cage-free eggs.

Sweden’s Green-On is developing a unique technology to produce food ingredients, especially fat for the food and feed industry, in a truly sustainable way.

Denmark’s Tempty Foods is sourcing mycoprotein from Swedish supplier Mycorena to develop products with ‘a bite and a base umami flavour’.

Maple Leaf Foods has reduced the size of its Greenleaf Foods plant-based protein division by 25% as category sales fail to meet expectations, according to comments from CEO Michael McCain.

Cultivated seafood pioneer Shiok Meats has revealed that its production costs have now dropped to the coveted US$50/kg milestone, bringing it even closer to realising its commercial launch plans by the end of 2023.

Myprotein, the world’s largest online consumer sports nutrition brand, is bringing Perfect Day’s precision fermentation whey into the fold.

Deliveroo exits the Netherlands due to “challenging market conditions.” The UK food delivery company reported a pretax loss of $178 million for the first half of 2022, up 54% from last year. The NL represented only 1%of their gross transactional value.

German food tech company Bluu Seafood, is showing off its first cell-based fish as it readies for regulatory approval processes across Europe, Asia, and North America.

Agro.Club, a global Agri-Tech solutions provider, announces its expansion into Brazil. Its Full Stack B2B Grain Marketplace serves a vast unmet demand for grain trade digitalization, by making it more transparent, efficient, and risk-free for all players involved.

UK Health and wellness brand Protein Works recently announced its entrance into the high protein meal category with its Savoury Super Meals, after selling 150 million protein shakes in over 100 different countries.

The advent of precision farming comes at a time of significant upheaval in the global supply chain as the number of foreign and domestic hackers with the ability to exploit this technology continues to grow.

Tazo aims to transition its entire tea, herbs and spices supply chain to a regenerative agriculture approach by 2029. The brand is hoping to develop 60% to 80% of its products through regenerative practices by the end of 2023.

Israeli startup Anina has developed plant-based ready meals packaged in capsules made from upcycled waste vegetables.

New research describes food systems designed not by the logic of growth such as efficiency and extraction, but by principles of sufficiency, regeneration, distribution, commons, and care. It argues that food systems can instead be the foundation of healthy communities, ecologies and economies.


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