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A new cohort of impactful startups join EIT Food entrepreneurship programmes and the EIT Food North-West community

EIT Food North-West is delighted to announce 15 innovative agrifood startups have joined our three flagship entrepreneurship programmes to launch, accelerate and scale their businesses.

14 Jul 2022
4 min reading time

These startups have joined EIT Food’s growing entrepreneurship community, which empowers startups to create impact in the agrifood industry. By joining Europe’s largest agrifood network, startups are able to connect with world-leading industry, investors and research organisations that are transforming our global food system.

EIT Food’s entrepreneurship programmes include:

  • Seedbed Incubator for entrepreneurs and pre-seed sartups
  • Accelerator Network for businesses looking to speed up success
  • RisingFoodStars for startups who are scaling fast

All programmes work with teams who have a solution addressing one of EIT Food’s innovation five focus areas: sustainable agriculture; digital traceability; protein diversification; sustainable aquaculture; or circular food systems.

Seedbed Incubator

This year’s Seedbed Incubator cohort welcomes 40 new teams, each joining one of five hubs across Europe. Queen’s University Belfast leads the hub for the EIT Food North-West region, and this year it will support eight teams. They are:

  • Allergy Act (UK): a platform supporting catering establishments to become allergy-friendly and helping individuals with specific dietary requirements to locate them.

  • BFF (Ireland): finds traits that will add value to live fermented products, such as health-promoting metabolites, flavour production, and screening for undesirable components.

  • EyeQ (Ireland): uses data to predict the remaining shelf-life of fresh produce. They empower stakeholders to adopt a biologic-based food supply chain that makes the system more agile, responsive, and efficient.

  • Food Futures (UK): is a farm system platform that uses sustainability metrics to capture, credit and drive positive behaviour change that will make agrifood production more sustainable.

  • Icesupp (UK): is a frozen meal supplement offering people a convenient way to consume calories, especially for those suffering from nutrition-impact symptoms, and cancer patients.

  • OPTIcut (UK): uses artificial intelligence and 3D image processing algorithms to provide cutting strategies and fruit profiles tailored to individual farms, to avoid unnecessary wastage of food produce.

  • PlayWel (UK): uses environmental enrichment for intensively reared poultry to help improve animal welfare. They address challenges such as chicken leg health problems, increased mortality, and reduced profits.

  • SyMO3 (Ireland): uses proprietary technology to produce LC Omega-3s de novo from microalgae. SyMO3 oils are suitable for inclusion in a range of food products to ensure adequate Omega-3 for all.

“We have joined the EIT Food Seedbed Programme to develop the route to market for Food Futures. We will use the excellent resources within Seedbed to strengthen our value proposition and to create the vital link with industry, particularly retail. Seedbed will allow Food Futures to become the unique tool of measuring and evidencing on-farm sustainability for consumers and retailers at both the local (UK), pan-European and global levels.”


– Ryan McGuire, Research Fellow at Queen’s University Belfast, Institute for Global Food Security

EIT Food Accelerator Network

The EIT Food Accelerator Network (EIT FAN) is a four-month equity-free grant funded programme. It connects impactful agrifood startups with industry-leading corporate and research partners, to pilot innovative technology and to achieve a successful market adoption.

This year’s EIT FAN cohort welcomes 61 teams. They join one of six hubs across Europe. The University of Reading and University of Cambridge hub will support 10 of these teams from the EIT Food North West region. They are:

  • Bright Biotech (UK): has developed technology that uses chloroplasts to express high amounts of high-value proteins in plants, producing high quality recombinant proteins for the agrifood industry.

  • Deep Crop Growbotics (UK): has developed a prototype that uses machine learning based 3D camera system and a 3-axis robot with cutting end effector to locate, harvest and grade broccoli.

  • Des Solutio (Portugal): has developed a 100% natural solution that can significantly extend the lifespan of antioxidants without using artificial preservatives.

  • Economad Solutions (UK): BioNomad™ is an innovative, modular and scalable waste-to-energy platform that can be easily installed in small livestock farms or anywhere where manure or slurry is regularly collected.

  • Greentech Innovators (Norway): uses biotechnology to improve the use of carbohydrates and production of a growth media for fermentation to single cell protein and algae to be used as feed in aquaculture.

  • INSPRO (UK): uses insects - Black Soldier Fly Larvae (BSFL) - to bio convert food waste / by-products into animal feed.

  • Little Inca (UK): is a smart baby food brand that uses quinoa and other plant-based ingredients in their products to support gut health in babies and infants.

  • Magic Broth (Lithuania): is a 100% natural source of collagen proteins that is rich in nutritional value and is produced by combining an ancient tradition with today’s innovation.

  • Microbe Plus (Poland): has developed an innovative, microbiological technology (probiotic for plants) that reduces the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers.

  • Niskus Biotec (Ireland): has developed bespoke fermentation processes and food grade fungal strains that enables the rapid scalable production of myco-products.

RisingFoodStars

The EIT Food RisingFoodStars association supports early scaleups that are ready for significant global expansion to scale up, raise investment, and tackle typical startup growing pain points.

Ace Aquatec (UK) has joined the latest RisingFoodStars cohort from the EIT Food North-West region. The startup partners with world leading experts in different scientific fields to apply their breakthrough technology developments to aquaculture and marine industries.

The RisingFoodStars Association has renewed the memberships of 32 startups who are existing or former members of the cohort. This includes Analytics Engines, Deep Planet, DryGro and Mimica, SafetyNet Technologies and Thor Ice from the EIT Food North-West community.

Startups join the EIT Food North-West community

Startups in the UK, Ireland and Iceland that join EIT Food’s entrepreneurship programmes also join the EIT Food North-West community. This enables startups to connect with EIT Food North-West partners across academia, research and the agrifood industry to form new strategic partnerships.

EIT Food North-West welcomes new agrifood startups to its region to help to strengthen the innovation potential in food systems across the region and beyond.

More about the North-West community:

  • Learn more about the EIT Food entrepreneurship community here

  • Learn more about EIT Food North-West here

  • Subscribe to the EIT Food North-West newsletter to receive the latest news and stories across our region here.

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