Leuven, 24 October 2018 – The European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) Food announced today the selection of the ten finalists of its 2018 Food Accelerator Network Programme. The finalists are invited to compete for three awards, consisting of an equity-free cash price of € 60,000 each, at the EIT Food Venture Summit on 28 November 2018, at Station F in Paris.
The selected finalists are four start-ups from Germany (LOEWI, Senorics, Wisefood GmbH, Acrai), two from Israel (Jet-Eat Printed Food, Kiinns), one from Estonia (Natufia Labs), one from Italy (FruitsApp), one from Portugal (Agri Marketplace) and one from Switzerland (FlavorWiki).
The selected start-ups have developed a diverse portfolio of food-related innovations. These include a digital platform developed by Agri Marketplace that directly connects farmers and agro-industrial customers to make buying and selling agricultural commodities easier, faster and more transparent. Or a low-cost and smartphone-ready near-infrared (NIR) sensor technology developed by Senorics, that enables consumers to detect and quantify ingredients like water, sugar, fat, protein, alcohol or contaminants present in their food. The technology provides a simple but powerful and accurate pocket lab for everyone.
The ten finalists were selected from a group of 41 agri-food technology startups involved in the 2018 EIT Food Accelerator Network (EIT FAN) Programme. Over a four-month acceleration period, these start-ups have had access to tools, connections, mentors and expertise to help them succeed.
MassChallenge Switzerland, part of MassChallenge’s global network of zero-equity startup accelerators, partnered earlier this year with EIT FAN and introduced a food tech track in its 2018 cohort. Held in Switzerland, Germany and Israel, the EIT FAN with MassChallenge aims to make Europe the go-to innovation hub for the world’s most promising agrifood start-ups.
Filip Fontaine, CEO of EIT Food, commented: “With the help of these start-ups, we are building an innovation ecosystem that delivers new solutions to address some of today’s most pressing agrifood challenges and consumer demands. With our help, these start-ups will take these innovations to the market and will create new business opportunities.”
Thierry Duvanel, Managing Director of MassChallenge Switzerland stated: “Running EIT FAN on the MassChallenge framework was really a success for all parties. Our acceleration scheme allowed the startups to be in close touch with the partners, leveraging their expertise, connections and infrastructure to further develop their projects.”
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About EIT Food
EIT Food is Europe’s leading food innovation initiative, with the aim to create a sustainable and future-proof food sector.
The initiative is made up of a consortium of key industry players, start-ups, research centres and universities from across Europe. It is one of six Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KIC) established by the European Institute for Innovation & Technology (EIT), an independent EU body set up in 2008 to promote innovation and entrepreneurship across Europe.
EIT Food aims to collaborate closely with consumers to develop new knowledge and technology-based products and services that will ultimately deliver a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle for all European citizens.
EIT Food has created the RisingFoodStars Association, which serves as an umbrella for high potential agrifood star-tups and scaleups, to support and nurture a select group of young companies. The Association is a partner of EIT Food and as such allows its members to participate in all EIT Food activities, thus contributing to the delivery of EIT Food’s strategic objectives.