Innovative ideas at the Demo Day in Lisbon

01 August 2019 South, Portugal, Regional Innovation Scheme From the 31st of July until the 1st of August, EIT Food South organized an AgriFood Demo Day in Lisbon (Portugal), gathering over 70 participants, selected from a vast number of applicants. This event was the culmination of the Innovation Grants competition that awards prizes to innovative food startups that are making our food system healthier, more sustainable and transparent.

Innovative ideas at the Demo Day in Lisbon

The  first  award  was  given  to Francisco Raio,  who presented a cellular agriculture startup producing fish meat without fishing or farming. Instead, it uses cellular agriculture cutting edge technologies to produce a fish meal for human consumption without the need to catch it or farm it. Fish cells are harvested from living animals and turned into fish meat in their fish breweries.

The  second  award  went  to Pedro Santos for  its  part  in  Agrodrone, a company that is building a technology that allows farmers to produce their own live fertilizer instead of relying on chemical fertilizers to grow their crops. The solution is a practical soil fermenter that corrects soil balance for the live fertilizer, which produces an optimal effect on crop and soil fertilization.

The event started with several training sessions, where attendants had the chance to learn how to pitch and how to get non-dilutive funding. After a working lunch, each start-up had 5 minutes to pitch their idea to a panel of judges and a live audience, formed by people from all walks of life, including MIT experts. The first day finalised with a personalised mentoring on the startup business model and a networking dinner.

On the second day, candidates received updated information on intellectual property rights management, technology transfer, legal needs and marketing, amongst other subjects before starting various pitching competitions. Ten startups took part in the EIT Food Innovation Prize Demo Day, presenting their ideas in front of a jury compose of Eunice Alves Costa, Marketing Director MM at Grupo Nabeiro Delta Cafés; Jacqueline Holmes, Private Investor; Lara Rodrigues, EIT Food RIS Project Manager; and Raquel Freire, International Business Development at Sonae.

The AgriFood Demo Days host the international Innovation Grants competition, which  rewards  start-ups  and  entrepreneurs  working  for  a  healthier  and  more  sustainable  food  value  chain.  They  are  held  in  a  total  of  15  countries  in  the  South and East of Europe. The Innovation Grants award a First Prize of €10,000 and a second prize  of  €5,000  to  the  best  entrepreneurs  and  start-ups  with  ideas  that  could  help achieve the EIT Food goals.

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