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AgTech FoodTech

ESG set aside over S$55 million to develop a vibrant agri-food tech ecosystem

Enterprise Singapore (ESG) has set aside over S$55 million to accelerate the growth of promising local agriculture and aquaculture companies. ESG’s ongoing efforts will catalyse innovation and scalable solutions to meet evolving needs. ESG has put in place various initiatives to support the growth of the agri-food tech startup ecosystem and drive deep tech commercialisation.

Modern technology in agriculture and aquaculture has enabled the development of climate-resilient, resource-efficient and high-yield farming solutions, offering opportunities for food producers to ‘grow more with less’ in densely built-up environments. ESG has been supporting local food producers in their development and adoption of these technologies.

“There is an urgency for our agriculture and aquaculture companies to leverage agri-food technologies to address the growing demand locally, as well as globally. We will also continue to support agri-food tech startups and the use of disruptive innovation to future-proof food production in Asia. This will not only contribute towards national food resilience, but further strengthen their global competitiveness.” 

Mr Ted Tan, Deputy CEO, Enterprise Singapore

ESG has anchored six global agri-food tech and life sciences accelerators in the past year under the Startup SG Accelerator programme – Big Idea Ventures, GROW, Hatch Blue, The Yield Lab, Trendlines Agrifood Innovation Centre and Temasek Life Sciences Accelerator – to nurture and mentor agri-food tech startups in fundraising, product development, commercialisation and internationalisation. These six accelerators are expected to groom over 150 agri-food tech startups over the next three years.

ESG is working with innovative aquaculture and agriculture companies, like:

  1. Singapore Aquaculture Technologies (SAT) is a sustainable aquaculture nutrition & healthcare company based in Singapore. It complement natural processes from the ocean, sun, micro-algae and aquaculture, with technology to create scalable solutions. It currently runs a smart floating fish farm incorporating Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence to control processes and optimise resource inputs, such as feed, energy and oxygen. 
  2. Sustenir Agriculture produces seasonal crops all year round through Controlled Environment Agriculture. A passion for nutrition and the environment runs through the Sustenir team. The company uses 95% less water than traditional farming and by growing locally, it reduces carbon emissions for a happier healthier earth.

Beyond growing enterprises, ESG will continue their efforts to build trust in Singapore products and services through quality and standards, as well as establish Singapore as a leading startup and trading hub.

Read more at SG Press Centre

Categories
Agriculture Fisheries

‘Survive, reboot, and grow,’ is the ‘new normal’

Amid the challenges in global food systems due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Department of Agriculture (DA), Philippines, is ready to take on the challenge of the ‘new normal’ facing the country’s agriculture and fishery sector. It is imperative for the government to rethink and restructure its policies and practices to prevent from being overwhelmed by future crisis. DA is considering a three-pronged strategy to bring agriculture back to normalcy.

  1. We must simply surpass this global crisis.
  2. We must reboot and reform our agricultural policies, and refocus our priorities to minimize the adverse effects.
  3. The agriculture and fishery sector must grow, by attracting more investments and resources, and partnering with the private sector.

Together, we will survive, reboot, and grow toward a food-secured nation.

Read more at Philippine Information Agency

Categories
Fisheries

Fish skin leather: artisans and designers are breathing new life into the tradition

Fish skin leather used to be commonplace in many cultures. As practical and pervasive as the material was, the practice of making fish skin leather faded in the 20th century. Its loss is intertwined with colonialism and assimilation. Now, it’s making a comeback. Fish skin leather is also emerging as a commodity in the world of fashion; in recent years, the material has caught the eye of designers who want to incorporate it into luxury items.

Commercial interest in fish skin leather is partly a result of consumers’ environmental and ethical concerns about the global leather supply chain. Most conventional leather like snakeskin and alligator skin is produced using harsh chemicals, such as chromium salts, which cause respiratory ailments and persistent skin ulcers in tannery workers.

Making fish skin leather is a gentler process than making conventional leather. It requires fewer harsh chemicals. Fish skin is a byproduct of the food industry that often goes to waste. Every tonne of filleted fish amounts to about 40 kilograms of skins. Fish skin leather is thin but remarkably strong because its fibers crisscross.

The revival of fish skin leather is more than the rediscovery of a craft. In a time of environmental crises, using local resources to their full extent may be an idea worth reviving.

Read more at Hakai Magazine

Categories
Uncategorized

Genetics expertise could transform fish production

The potential of fish and shellfish production to feed a growing global population could be significantly enhanced through advances in genetics and biotechnology. Most aquaculture species can produce many offspring, and large populations with improved genetics can be bred quickly for improved production performance. Farmed fish is on course to overcome wild fish as the main source of seafood, and consequently genetic tools and expertise are in high demand to increase the efficiency and sustainability of aquaculture systems, which currently rely mostly on unselected stocks.

In the future, technologies such as genome editing could be used to introduce desirable traits, such as disease resistance, into farmed species, and surrogate breeding could be employed to support production of preferred species.

Read more at phys.org