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AgTech FoodTech Protein

Government of Canada announced $100 million financing for Merit Functional Foods plant

The Government of Canada announced the financing of close to $100 million for the new Merit Functional Foods plant in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Merit Functional Foods will construct a commercial-scale protein extraction facility that will produce plant proteins superior in solubility, flavour and purity. This plant, scheduled to be fully operational in December 2020 will create 80 new jobs and will help to establish the region as a world-leading agriculture and processing hub.

“The made-in-Canada agricultural technologies and innovations from Merit Functional Foods not only give us a competitive advantage in the global marketplace, they are creating jobs and adding value to our farmers` commodities. This is a very exciting project that demonstrates our Government`s commitment to positioning Canada as a leader in production of plant proteins.”

The Honorable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Merit Functional Foods will be the first facility in the world with the capability to produce food-grade canola protein ready and safe for human consumption. It will source 100 percent of its inputs from Canadian producers, with a projected forecast to utilize 10,000 metric tonnes of yellow peas and 17,000 tonnes of canola seed in its first year.

The federal financing for Merit Functional Foods includes:

  1. $10 million in a repayable contribution from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s AgriInnovate Program;
  2. $25 million in debt financing from Farm Credit Canada;
  3. $55 million in debt financing from Export Development Canada; and
  4. $9.2 million from the Protein Industries Canada supercluster announced earlier to support a project for the commercialization of a new highly soluble, highly functional pea and canola protein isolates.

Consumer demand for plant-based proteins is growing in both Canada and markets around the world. This innovative technology provides alternatives to animal and dairy derived proteins, adding value to the grain commodities and plant-based proteins.

Read more at Government of Canada

Categories
Biotech FoodTech

Alt-food startup Biomilq raised $3.5 million in funding from Breakthrough Energy Ventures

An artificial breast milk company, based in Durham, North Carolina, has received $3.5 (£2.8) million from Breakthough Energy Ventures, an investment fund co-founded by Bill Gates. Biomilq was co-founded by Leila Strickland PhD, an accomplished cell biologist, and Michelle Egger MBA, an experienced food scientist. The company is on a mission to provide the next generation every opportunity to thrive by producing cultured breastmilk that offers supplemental nutrition to mother’s milk with the convenience of formula.

Breakthough Energy Ventures’ investing coalition includes Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Richard Branson, Masayoshi Son, Jack Ma, Michael Bloomberg and Marc Benioff. The $1 billion fund, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, was established to help prevent the worst effects of climate change arising from carbon emissions.

Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure healthy development in children. But exclusive breastfeeding is unrealistic for some and impossible for many— due to low milk production, medical reasons, incompatible workplaces, or the ongoing stigma around breastfeeding in public. As per estimates, more than 4 out of 5 moms have to stop breastfeeding before the recommended six months.

That means the vast majority of us are turning to dairy-based formula. And that means many of us face serious trade-offs, as infant formula lacks the critical nutrients of breastmilk and carries a heavy environmental burden. Parents and caregivers are left with suboptimal choices, which is why biomilq is developing this option that doesn’t force a trade-off between babies’ nutrition and mothers’ wellbeing.

Biomilq co-founders, CEO Michelle Egger and CSO Leila Strickland hope that the breast milk produced by Biomilq from culturing mammary epithelial cells will help reduce the carbon footprint from the global infant formula market. While the pair unveiled their proof of concept in February, Eggers says they’re still in the early stages and they hope to have a product on store shelves within five years.

Read more at Biomilq

Categories
AgTech FoodTech

AgriFood Category Definitions

  1. Ag Biotechnology: On-farm inputs for crop & animal ag including genetics, microbiome, breeding, animal health.
  2. Agribusiness Marketplaces: Commodities trading platforms, online input procurement, equipment leasing.
  3. Bioenergy & Biomaterials: Non-food extraction & processing, feedstock technology, cannabis pharmaceuticals.
  4. Farm Management Software, Sensing & IoT: Ag data capturing devices, decision support software, big data analytics
  5. Farm Robotics, Mechanization & Equipment: On-farm machinery, automation, drone manufacturers, grow equipment.
  6. Midstream Technologies: Food safety & traceability tech, logistics & transport, processing tech.
  7. Novel Farming Systems: Indoor farms, aquaculture, insect, & algae production.
  8. Innovative Food: Cultured meat, novel ingredients, plant-based proteins.
  9. In-Store Retail & Restaurant Tech: Shelf-stacking robots, 3D food printers, POS systems, food waste monitoring IoT.
  10. Restaurant Marketplaces: Online tech platforms delivering food from a wide range of vendors.
  11. eGrocery: Online stores and marketplaces for sale & delivery of processed & un-processed ag products to consumer.
  12. Home & Cooking Tech: Smart kitchen appliances, nutrition technologies, food testing devices.
  13. Online Restaurants & Meal Kits: Startups offering culinary meals and sending pre-portioned ingredients to cook at home.
  14. Cloud Retail Infrastructure: On-demand enabling tech, ghost kitchens, last mile delivery robots & services
  15. Miscellaneous eg. fintech for farmers

Source: AgFunder AgriFood Funding Report

Categories
AgTech FoodTech

Top AgTech and FoodTech Startups

AgTech and FoodTech are on the cusp of next era of productivity and environmental conservation while reducing food waste, improving carbon sequestration, improving water quality, and increasing renewable energy. Below is the glimpse of exceptional companies who are pushing the boundaries of innovation and technology.

These 100 innovative AgTech and FoodTech companies are categorised in 10 broad categories on the basis of specific problems addressed by them.

  1. Crop Nutrition, Health & Protection: AgBiome, Benson Hill Biosystems, BioConsortia, Biome Makers, Ginkgo Bioworks, Inari, Pivot Bio, Trace Genomics, ZeaKal, NewLeaf Symbiotics, Plant Response, Provivi, Semios, Terramera, Vestaron, Zymergen, Indigo Agriculture, Fieldin, Biotalys, Taranis, and TerViva.
  2. Farm Management & Forecasting: Arable Labs, Agrosmart, CropX, Growers Edge, PrecisionHawk, Resson, Solinftec, The Yield, Agworld, Bushel, CropIn, Farmer’s Business Network, Farmobile, Orbital Insight, Prospera Technologies and AgriWebb.
  3. Environmental Impact & Waste: MagGrow, Bowery, BrightFarms, Infarm, AeroFarms, Gotham Greens, Plenty, Enterra, Afresh, FoodMaven, Full Harvest, Lactips, TIPA, AgriProtein, Winnow, and WISErg.
  4. Labor: FarmWise, ecoRobotix, Robotics Plus, Bossa Nova Robotics, and Soft Robotics.
  5. Animal Nutrition & Health: Advanced Animal Diagnostics, and Stellapps.
  6. Food Quality & Safety: Ancera, Hazel Technologies, CMS Technology, Label Insight, Tastewise, Apeel Sciences, and Clear Labs.
  7. Storage, Transportation & Distribution: BluWrap, TeleSense, and Farmer’s Fridge.
  8. Traceability: FoodLogiQ, ICIX, IdentiGEN, and SafeTraces.
  9. Trade: Ninjacart, ProducePay, Brightloom, and Crowd Cow.
  10. Novel Foods & Ingredients: Good Catch, Imperfect Foods, Impossible Foods, JUST, Miyoko’s, Ripple Foods, Soylent, Sunfed meats, Clara Foods, DouxMatok, Epogee, Future Meat Technologies, Geltor, Hinoman, Innovopro, Manus Bio, Memphis Meats, MycoTechnology, Noblegen, Nuritas, Perfect Day, and Protifarm.

Source: SVG Ventures THRIVE Platform