30 innovative agritech and foodtech start-ups from around the world, working to address food security challenges, were named for the final stages of the Global FoodTech Challenge that has a pooled prize of USD 2 million. The 30 shortlisted start-ups have been selected from 667 submissions across 79 countries, representing a 52% increase in entries compared to the first edition of the competition, which saw 437 applications from 68 countries, with previous winners announced from Australia, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and the UK.
Targeted at early-stage start-ups trying to enter the agri-food tech industry, the Global FoodTech Challenge looks for innovative solutions that address food production and food loss and waste challenges, from indoor and vertical farming to upcycled ingredients and waste efficiency. Of the shortlisted start-ups, 50% of proposals were focused on tackling food production – with a heavy focus on insect farming and aquaculture, farm management, plant-based solutions, and precision farming. Applications addressing food loss and waste solutions account for the other 50% of the shortlisted start-ups, which featured food waste tech, food sharing platforms, supply chain monitoring, and traceability as key themes.
Salmeen Alameri, CEO of Silal, one of the agricultural entities involved in the judging process, said in an interview with Farmers View Africa, “When it comes to food production and food security, we are at an inflection point. We cannot continue as we are; there is a need for systemic change that presents an opportunity for devising innovative solutions to food security challenges. This competition provides an ideal platform where innovative agritech start-ups come together to develop effective solutions that help us build a robust agriculture system for future generations. We are proud to be part of this far-reaching competition and support the challenge’s food production track. We will continue to work closely with our partners, invest in the latest agritech solutions, and look forward to working more closely with the successful teams.”
Image credit: Global Food Tech Challenge