Eatable Adventures ha presentado los datos de su estudio anual “El Estado del Foodtech en España 2023”. La aceleradora Foodtech ha presentado la cuarta edición de este informe, que refleja la realidad del ecosistema emprendedor en este ámbito y la evolución de la inversión recibida a lo largo del año 2023.

Los desafíos ligados a las problemáticas relacionadas con el cambio climático, el crecimiento exponencial de la población mundial y el encarecimiento de los costes asociados con la producción de alimentos, siguen impulsando el desarrollo de nuevas propuestas tecnológicas disruptivas que buscan soluciones eficaces a estos retos. En un panorama global afectado por una profunda crisis, el ecosistema Foodtech español se posiciona como uno de los más dinámicos, manteniendo un censo muy similar al del año pasado, con un total de 420 startups en 2023.

El sector Foodtech en España exhibe una distribución geográfica destacada con presencia en todas las Comunidades Autónomas. A pesar de esta dispersión, se observan patrones claros en las preferencias de los emprendedores para lanzar sus proyectos. Madrid lidera con un 34,2%, experimentando un aumento de 6,6 puntos porcentuales respecto al año anterior. Cataluña sigue en segundo lugar con un 30,3%, reflejando un incremento de 4,6 puntos. En cambio, Andalucía registra una ligera disminución del 2% con un total del 9,1%.

Producción y Transformación de Alimentos lidera sobre el resto de categorías

En 2023, las startups españolas han experimentado cambios en la distribución de categorías. Agritech, que constituye el 21% de las startups encuestadas, disminuyó en un 3%. Por otro lado, la categoría de Producción y Transformación de Alimentos lidera con un 41%, suponiendo un aumento de 6 puntos porcentuales respecto al año anterior, impulsado por la creciente demanda de innovaciones en la producción de alimentos. El ámbito de Retail y Logística (13%), ha experimentado una disminución de casi 12 puntos porcentuales en comparación con 2022. Este cambio podría indicar un redireccionamiento o una reclasificación de startups tradicionalmente asociadas a la distribución y logística hacia el Delivery. En cuanto el sector de Restaurant Tech y Delivery (25%), evidencia un crecimiento continuo en la tecnología relacionada con restaurantes y entregas, absorbiendo parte de las startups que antes se clasificaban en la categoría de Retail y Logística.

A la hora de desglosar en subsector, en el ámbito de Agritech, las tres principales categorías experimentaron una reducción, favoreciendo a segmentos como la robótica y la gestión del agua, que mostraron un ligero crecimiento, no obstante, los sistemas de automatización de cultivos continúan siendo la área preeminente. En cuanto a la Producción y transformación de alimentos, se registra un incremento de 10.5 puntos porcentuales en la creación de nuevos productos con ingredientes innovadores, lo que sugiere que las startups están respondiendo a la creciente demanda del mercado por alimentos más innovadores. En el sector retail, se registra un crecimiento de casi 8 puntos porcentuales en etiquetas inteligentes, mientras disminuyen los nuevos canales de venta en favor del aumento de plataformas análiticas. Respecto al sector de Restaurant Tech, las plataformas de gestión mantienen su liderazgo, seguidas de cerca por los marketplaces online y las startups especializadas en delivery.

Las startups cuentan con equipos reducidos, una destacada representación femenina y preservan su tecnología con secretos comerciales

A la hora de analizar la composición de los equipos de las startups, el estudio evidencia que se caracterizan por equipos más reducidos respecto a la media nacional, con un 60% de las startups encuestadas con un equipo entre 1 y 5 empleados. En cuanto a la representación femenina destaca que el 36% de las startups encuestadas cuenta con una mujer como socia, un dato muy positivo teniendo en cuenta a la media nacional, que se sitúa en tan solo un 18%.

El desarrollo tecnológico de una startup es sin duda uno de los aspectos más relevantes para su éxito. Según evidencia el estudio, el 28% de las startups encuestadas poseen al menos una patente, y el 35% emplea secretos comerciales, lo que supone un aumento de 5 puntos porcentuales en relación al año anterior. Con respecto a las tecnologías más empleadas, la biotecnología es la tecnología más destacada, experimentando un crecimiento significativo desde 2022.

En cuanto a la madurez tecnológica (TRL), se destaca que la mayoría de las startups demuestra un nivel de desarrollo considerablemente alto, indicando una sólida posición en términos tecnológicos. A pesar de este éxito, surge el desafío de mantener una innovación constante para seguir siendo relevantes en un entorno competitivo y en constante evolución.

Desaceleración de la inversión global: España emerge como uno de los ecosistemas más resilientes

El contexto geopolítico actual y la crisis económica han tenido repercusiones significativas, en términos de inversión a nivel global, en todos los sectores. En cuanto al Foodtech, la inversión global alcanzó aproximadamente los 27,4 mil millones de euros en 2022. Al comparar el segundo trimestre de 2022 con el mismo período en 2023, se evidencia una caída del 61%, descendiendo de 5,9 mil millones de dólares a 2,3 mil millones de dólares.

En el contexto español, se vislumbra un escenario  más alentador a pesar de una leve reducción en la inversión total. Las startups Foodtech españolas consiguieron asegurar un total de 226 millones de euros en el año 2023, suponiendo una disminución tan solo del 16% respecto al año anterior. Aunque esta leve caída, mucho más moderada que la tendencia global de desaceleración, señala la fortaleza y resiliencia del ecosistema a nivel nacional.

Con respecto a la fase de inversión de las startups, se observa una estabilidad en las rondas pre-seed y seed, indicando la continua atracción del sector para inversores nacionales e internacionales. En 2023, las startups en fase seed fueron la mayoría, representando aproximadamente el 38.9%, seguidas de cerca por las fases pre-seed, que constituyeron alrededor del 29%.

Destacan, entre los principales inversores nacionales, Capsa Vida, que ha respaldado a baïa, entomo agroindustrial, GrinGrin y nucaps; BeHappy Investments, que ha apostado por Harbest Market y Hunty; y Clave Capital, que ha invertido en Deep Detection y Groots. Eatable Adventures, ha consolidado su posición como destacado inversor en España, respaldando a Bio2Coat, mmmico y Néboda, todas ellas aceleradas en el programa de Spain Foodtech. Por otro lado, el ecosistema español sigue atrayendo también la atención de destacados inversores internacionales, como ProVeg Incubator, North South Ventures, Big Idea Venture o Bynd Venture Capital, entre otros.

A la hora de analizar las herramientas más destacadas para crecer, las startups están alineadas: aprender de los mejores casos de éxito, facilitar el acceso a ayudas públicas, aumentar la visibilidad mediática, establecer acuerdos de “co-inversión” y colaborar estrechamente con la industria alimentaria.

“En el año 2023, el ecosistema Foodtech español ha superado desafíos críticos, enfrentándose a las repercusiones de la crisis económica global. A pesar de la leve desaceleración en la inversión total, este período ha marcado un hito crucial para el sector. No solo hemos sido testigos de la resiliencia de nuestro ecosistema, sino también de la consolidación y el lanzamiento al mercado de tecnologías disruptivas, como ha sido el caso de la llegada al canal Retail del primer bacon vegetal bioimpreso en 3D de la mano de Cocuus y Foody’s. Este logro destaca la robustez tecnológica de España, reafirmando su posición destacada en el ámbito internacional del Foodtech”, ha comentado Mila Valcárcel, Managing Partner de Eatable Adventures. Para seguir consolidando el papel estratégico de España en el panorama Foodtech se necesita, sin embargo, un mayor impulso en la inversión y una colaboración más estratégica entre todos los agentes clave del sistema alimentario “Si queremos ser realmente competitivos frente a los ecosistemas internacionales más desarrollados necesitamos ser más ambiciosos y tener visión de futuro de este sector tan estratégico para España. Es esencial poner un mayor esfuerzo en inversión y colaboración con la industria, pero también contar con un mayor apoyo a nivel institucional y tener una estrategia alineada entre iniciativas territoriales y nacionales.”.

Para más información sobre el estudio, descarga el informe completo aquí.

Big companies are betting on open innovation to lead the transformation of the agrifood industry

  • 78% of the companies consulted already use external sources to innovate, and 100% have invested in innovation in the last two years.
  • According to the study, most innovation efforts are concentrated on the Product area (92%), followed by Technologies (57%), Processes (53%), and Business Models (46%).
  • 78% of companies identify the General Management as the main decision-maker, although the Innovation Departments with 57% and the Business Development and Marketing Departments with 28% in both cases are gaining more weight.
  • 93% of surveyed companies prefer collaborating with technology centers, while 71% prefer co-developing with external entities as open innovation tools.

 

 “Innovate or die” is the motto of almost every company today. Demographic and sustainability challenges, socioeconomic uncertainty and changing consumer trends are some of the key factors that have driven a major technological transformation in the agri-food sector. A transition that has become an opportunity to promote the competitiveness and progress of companies.

Eatable Adventures, one of the world’s leading accelerators, has today presented the data of its first study “The State of Open Innovation”, a report that dives into the need for companies in the food and beverage industry to innovate, as well as the keys to make this innovation as successful as possible.

When it comes to collaborating with external agents to create new products or services or transform existing ones, Mila Valcárcel, Managing Partner of Eatable Adventures, highlighted the change in mentality of companies. “We are in a changing and dynamic environment. Companies need to generate innovation at all levels to improve their competitiveness, but in many cases, they do not have the structure or capacity to do so efficiently internally. Collaborative environments with startups, R&D centers, or universities provide a great advantage, as they allow companies to innovate in a disruptive, agile, and efficient manner, with much more efficient risk management. From Eatable Adventures, we are witnessing how companies are adopting open innovation models more frequently, allowing them to take their productivity and efficiency to another level. The sector is undergoing a transformation process very similar to the one the technology industry went through.” This trend, according to the study, is being established among the Food and Beverage sector leaders in Spain such as Mahou, Pascual, or Europastry, but is also spreading in more emerging markets in the Latin America region, with companies that are leading the transformation of the sector, such as Sigma or Alianza Team.

 

Innovation is a strategic priority for companies

According to the study, 100% of the surveyed companies said they have invested in innovation in the last two years, during the analyzed period (2020- 2022). Positively, this indicates a great deal of maturity in this area, which makes it easier to establish win-win partnerships with external agents. This fact extends to all types of companies in the sector, regardless of their revenue volume and size, as well as their geographical area.

Among the areas of innovation that are prioritized, Products takes the lead (92%), followed by Technologies (57%), Processes (53%), and Business Models (46%).

 

Which department is responsible for the innovation decisions within your company?

78% of the surveyed companies identify General Management as the most responsible party when it comes to decision-making. However, 57% of surveyed companies cite the need for innovation and adaptation as the reason for creating Innovation Departments to handle these decisions. In terms of launching R&D projects, this is highly positive, since it confirms that organizations are changing their cultural mindsets. Finally, the Business Development and Marketing departments also have a very significant weight in establishing these decisions and coordinating innovation flows, making the correlation between innovation and the expansion potential of the companies evident.

 

2022, the year of open innovation

Open innovation is the process by which companies implement innovative opportunities to their existing business models through corporate partnerships with external agents, as well as the acquisition of social capital through investments. As the food sector faces enormous pressures and shoppers demand healthier, more functional, and more sustainably produced products, this sector presents a very favorable environment for the development of these valuable partnerships.

According to the survey, 89% of companies prioritize their internal resources for generating innovation. However, 78% of the surveyed companies state that they turn to external sources to transform their company, making collaboration a key way to generate synergies and new business opportunities.

 

From where does innovation in your company originate?

Respondent companies choose to collaborate with universities and technological centers (93%) first when it comes to choosing open innovation tools that meet their needs and level of innovation.

In these universities, the research is generally carried out in scientific parks equipped with the technology necessary to scale these solutions.  Secondly, 71% of surveyed companies prefer to codevelop with external entities, which sometimes results in acceleration programs, industrial scaling, or venture building, among others entities , which often results in acceleration programs, industrial scaling, or venture building, among other results. Over 50% of companies conduct startup search programs such as showcases, scouting, and challenges to learn more about the ecosystem. With 25%, direct investment in startups comes in fourth place. Companies allocate certain amounts of financial resources to another company in order to capture value.

In these universities, the research is generally carried out in scientific parks equipped with the technology necessary to scale these solutions. Secondly, 71% of surveyed companies prefer to codevelop with external entities, which sometimes results in acceleration programs, industrial scaling, or venture building, among others entities , which often results in acceleration programs, industrial scaling, or venture building, among other results

 

Collaboration with startups and creation of specialized investment vehicles: the areas with the greatest growth projection

Nearly all surveyed companies (93%) state that they plan to invest in innovation in the next 3 upcoming years. When considering which tools would best suit their needs, collaboration with universities and technology centers (78%) emerges again, followed by the desire to conduct pilot tests (75%), as well as co-development with external entities (75%) and boosting the innovation culture within the companies (75%), which once again reinforces the priority of innovation in the growth strategy of the companies. Startup search and incubation tools are also capturing growing interest from companies, with 46% and 42% respectively. A projection that is also supported by the comparison between current and desired tools. In addition, the desire for growth in the tool of specialized investment vehicles is also highlighted.

 

What type of open innovation tools would best suit your company?

Regarding the self-perception of the degree of innovation of the company, the average score of these companies is 7.46 out of 10, still room for improvement, especially considering that companies award a 9.4 to the importance of innovation for the growth of their company.

The companies’ self-perception of innovation scored 7.46 out of 10, still room for improvement, especially since most companies assign a 9.4 rating to innovation’s importance to their growth.

Finally, when talking about the projected investment in innovation during the next year, companies are clear, with over 85% betting on increasing investment in this area.

As the study highlights, it is evident that open innovation is gaining more and more weight as a model for attracting talent, technology, and new business models since it has the power to transform organizations in an agile and efficient way

 

Download the full report here.

 

The impact of room service on hotels is a management problem since it affects the flow of food and beverage services in hotels that offer room service as well as the burden it places on staff and hotels that do not have kitchen facilities.

Le Room Service aims to improve the hotel offer and increase sales by making room service itself more attractive, adding value to the hotel sector. You’ll discover their secrets and learn about their experience in the Eatable Adventures Acceleration Program as you read on.

 

  1. How do you manage to add value to the hotel sector from Le Room Service? What are the services you offer?

 

Le Room Service is a company specialized in outsourcing the F&B service of hotel rooms, apart-hotels and tourist apartments.

We were born in 2017 with the aim of revolutionizing the hospitality sector by offering the cost-effective alternative to room service through operational innovation and specialization in gastronomic trends. As of today, we operate with more than 300 Hotel establishments among which stand out groups such as Meliá, NH, Vincci, Iberoestar, Turim or Barceló in Seville, Madrid, Barcelona and Lisbon.

We focus on bringing value to the hotel sector in 5 aspects: improved profitability, new customer experience, disruptive concept, standardization of processes and increased valuation, allowing hotels to focus on their core business.

 

  1. Why did you decide to join EA’s Acceleration Program?

 

At that time we were in a very early stage of the project, but we already had the first positive results that validated the viability of the business model.

We saw Eatable Adventures as a great opportunity to introduce my company to the startup ecosystem and exponentially accelerate its growth. Additionally, being able to rely on corporate mentors from Grupo Meliá and Banco Sabadell increased the chances of success.

 

  1. How has Eatable Adventures helped you achieve your goals?

 

Eatable Adventures helped us in different ways to professionalize our project.

Firstly, we had an initial mentoring phase where we drew up a medium-term plan, set goals and followed up on them. As part of this plan, Le Room Service aimed to obtain an investment round for national expansion, which later culminated in the opening of its second location (after Seville), Madrid.

Secondly, Eatable Adventures opened doors for us through its network of contacts. With partners like Meliá as well as with investment funds and angel investors. Thanks to all this, we got our first round of investment at the end of the program.

 

  1. What is the most valuable advice José Luis has given you during our Acceleration Program?

 

First of all, we would like to thank José Luis for his involvement and trust in the Le Room Service project. He has always followed our evolution very closely, offering, from his experience, the impulse and stimulus that the startup required in each phase.

More than a specific advice, we keep his mentality to think big, eliminating the barriers that we could have and transmitting the limitless scalability that our project has.

 

  1. How do you see Le Room Service in the medium/long term?

 

At the moment we are immersed and focused on our international expansion, we have just opened in Lisbon and we are working on future openings in Berlin and Paris. We have outlined an ambitious expansion plan and, in the next 3 years we want to be offering our services in the main European capitals.

In addition, we are also growing horizontally in services; we no longer only offer Room Service, but we are now a more comprehensive solution for Food & Beverage departments. We have the possibility to complete the hotel’s offer with breakfast, events or lobby services.

We are also rebranding to adapt to the new positioning that the business requires at this stage. Using our new exclusive packaging, we can operate without barriers in 5-star hotels and raise the brand’s perception.

There are many changes happening right now, and we are determined to successfully navigate them. Among other things, we owe our success to the experience and know-how acquired over the years and to the invaluable support provided by Eatable Adventures.

Get to know more of our Alumni here.

Moon DrinksNacho Alonso, CEO and Founder of Moon Drinks, was hooked on traditional soft drinks for years and, fed up with not finding a healthy alternative on the market, decided to become an entrepreneur and make healthy soft drinks a reality. “The best way to predict the future is… to invent it,” he says. That’s how he founded Moon Drinks SL., the organic and vegan soft drinks company he is running today.

Find out how Eatable Adventures Accelerator Program helped him scale his business, what advice he has retained, and where he sees Moon Water going in the future.

 

  1. When and for what purpose was Moonwater born?

The project was born at the end of 2017 and has evolved a lot over the years. Our purpose is to contribute to improving the quality of life of people and the planet by creating healthy and sustainable alternatives to traditional beverages.

 

Traditional soft drinks have not changed their formulas for decades nor adapting or incorporating industry advances and consumer demands. Traditional drinks still rule the market, but they have become obsolete. Consumers are unaware of the alternatives that may exist, and therefore need to be informed about them.

 

  1. How did you come up with the formula for your soft drinks, and how does it differ from other soft drinks?

It has been a very long and laborious process. The current formula wasn’t found until May 2021 (almost 4 of work). We have launched four versions of our product on the market, and it was consumers and customers who validated it. Because of this, you could say the product was not created by us, but by the consumer only two red lines: we do not compromise health nor sustainability, which are core values for us.

 

As opposed to traditional soft drinks, we use 100% natural and organic ingredients, with very little sugar and low-calories. Our bubbles are soft, pleasant to the taste, and our flavors are not the traditional ones, we offer innovative flavor combinations that are truly delicious. Our business is to provide new experiences for consumers. In addition, our products are packaged exclusively with aluminum, the most sustainable material for packaging now a days .

 

  1. How did the Eatable Adventures Accelerator Program help you scale your project?

The experience was truly BRUTAL, completely changing the way we viewed the industry, better understanding the global market, and providing us with the tools we needed to reach our goals. And I can’t forget the most important thing, an amazing team on a professional and personal level.

 

  1. How do you see the future of Moonwater?

Our company is called Moon Water, we started this “revolution” with the soft drink category by launching Moonwater, but we are developing new products. We have already created an organic energy drink that is a healthy alternative to energy drinks that we plan to launch this year.

 

While we continue to work on new products and trends, we will also strive to improve existing products, incorporating all the new technologies, both at the production level and in packaging, and improving the entire value chain.

 

We are very happy with the evolution, we can’t believe it. The company is growing fast in Spain but also abroad, with a strong presence in the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden, Qatar, etc. Our goal is to bring Moonwater to every corner of the world.

 

  1. What is the most valuable advice José Luis has given you during our Acceleration Program?

That the product had to be at the peak of our project, which is why we will never be completely satisfied with our products, because we are firm believers that everything can be improved, no matter how good it is.

Artificial intelligence has become a fundamental pillar of the food industry these days. This new technology has a purpose throughout the entire agri-food chain, innovating, streamlining, and improving processes within the sector allowing it to offer a better service, quality, and product to consumers. 

Proppos

We had the opportunity to interview Nil Salomó Bellavista, CEO and Co-Founder of Proppos, an artificial intelligence company specializing in food recognition, which together with its partners, offers first-class A.I. payment solutions to the Food and Retail industries. Proppos’ mission is to transform the payment experience through an accurate, autonomous, and accessible computer vision solution. 

Read on to learn firsthand how the idea for the company came about, future goals, his views on how artificial intelligence will change the world, and more.

 

How did the idea of starting Proppos come up?

While working in the food sector, specifically in a catering company within the IT team, we observed the need to speed up the queues in the food service business, yet without increasing costs. The most feasible and optimal solution was to automate the payment system using artificial intelligence and computer vision technology.  The products we were selling consisted of natural products, with no barcode, making AI the technology of choice for this project. From this idea, we started to conceptualize the Proppos concept in 2019. 

What stage of the project were you in when you entered the Eatable Adventures Accelerator Program and how do you consider you have come out? 

We entered the Eatable Adventures Accelerator Program in the very early stages of the project, but already had a validated MVP and some market traction.

Throughout the program, our ideas were maturing and becoming more formalized. Our project was much clearer at the end of the program, both in terms of funding, processes, and relationships with companies. 

Do you have new innovations in mind for Proppos? 

Absolutely! Our goal is to diversify our customers as much as possible within the food service sector. 

At the very beginning of our project, we were faced with the challenges of the global pandemic, in which the whole catering sector was forced to close to the public. Having a new and innovative project focused on the food service sector slowed down the integration process as we had to explain and show our customers what Proppos was all about. Like everything else, the sector had to innovate, and with this new opportunities appeared for us for implementing our technology in the food sector, from order tracking in the fast-food sector, to monitoring food safety in clinics and hospitals.

In what ways do you think artificial intelligence is going to reshape the world? 

It certainly has already been doing so. Gradually, before we know it, we will be involving artificial intelligence in our day-to-day lives. The first step will be to use tools like ours to automate monotonous and simple task processes, streamlining human daily life, saving time, and allowing workers to focus on more value-added reasoning tasks.  

What has been the best advice Jose Luis has given you?

He has helped and advised us in many different areas, but especially in terms of investment and how to focus when it comes to seeking investment rounds. Thanks to him we understood the importance of expanding and searching for investment at an international level to be able to scale the company and generate money in a sustainable way.

 

Learn more about Eatable Adventures’ alumni by visiting more interviews in our blog.

Cocuus Javier I. Zaratiegui

Javier I. Zaratiegui – CTO & Partner of Cocuus.

We had the opportunity to interview Javier I. Zaratiegui, the CTO & Partner of Cocuus, a Spanish food tech company that develops industrial solutions for the production of plant- or cell-based animal protein analogs (mimetic food) using 2D/3D laser printing, bioprinting, and robotics. 

The company has just won the international Quality Innovation Award (QIA) in the category of Innovation in Microenterprises and Startups. 

Find out all about his experience in the Eatable Adventures Acceleration Program, and some of his secrets as you read on. 

1. What is the future potential of 3D food printing according to your vision?

 

Regardless of which technology is used to create a “new” food, the important point to us is its background and potential. 

There are two sides to this equation, on one hand, current methods have a carbon footprint that needs to be reduced, and on the other hand, the technology will help us create better foods, by balancing nutrients or encapsulating them, which results in products that are more sustainable for the environment and healthier for our bodies. 

Cocuus uses 3D printing, extrusion, thermoformed molds, laser cutting, food ink printing, and a lot of ingenuity and creativity. In recent years, new technologies for food manufacturing are making their way into the food industry. Unsurprisingly, this coincides with the time when extensive research into alternative proteins is bearing fruit. 

Today, new manufacturing techniques can and ought to be used to develop these new proteins into new products, taking into consideration fermentation, mycelium, insect proteins, algae, and even cells grown in laboratories and multiplied in bioreactors. This is already a reality and provides consumers with more choices.

2. How have Eatable Adventures helped Cocuus achieve its goals?

 

Eatable Adventures has been a turning point in our roadmap. Among other things, it inspired us to change the mentality necessary for our startup to transform into a business. At the very beginning, we saw that our knowledge was very focused on creating machines, and Eatable Adventures showed the potential we could have if those machines were directed toward solving the problems of large food industries. It was a before and after. 

Before we met Eatable Adventures, we were also making technologies but focused on chefs, restaurants, catering companies, and events, among others. We provided our clients with tools to create new dishes, decorate or combine them with technology to impress their guests. That’s how we began, with laser cutting machines, printing, and food ink.

3. What is the most valuable piece of advice José Luis has given you during our Acceleration Program?

 

We have had some memorable moments with José Luis. Perhaps the best one was when he “challenged” us to manufacture a machine that could be able to make large parts (whole cuts) since that was what the industry demanded. 

Saying to someone from the Navarra region like Patxi Larumbe “I bet you can’t make a printed cutlet…” meant to set the flame to this project. As a result, a new chapter began in this whole acceleration process: large corporations, large international investment funds, and also many media outlets started to contact us. José Luis has been very helpful to us in facing this whole process, which was completely new for us, and he has provided us with knowledge about his perspective and experience before making some important decisions.

4. What is your vision for Cocuus in the short, medium, and long term?

“Focus Cocuus. In the short term, we are focusing on a few projects before tackling other bigger challenges. We know there is a lot of competition in our field and we want to finish our machines in the short term and test their robustness and reliability before offering them to new customers. The same goes for us in international markets. We hope to learn and resolve any necessary adjustments to these first pilot lines on the mainland and later jump into Asia as well as America and Europe, in all three areas at the same time. For this, we must strengthen some departments of the company and continue with the contacts we have been making to understand what each of these markets demands. We don’t go in with a solution or a product and look for someone to buy it from us; what we do is find out what our customer needs and then offer him an adapted solution. It’s the same for us to make a shrimp machine or a steak machine. What we are very clear about is that we only take on large production projects. We have already left behind the projects for a few restaurants, now we are targeting large manufacturers or distributors in the food industry. 

In the medium term, when all the projects are already on the market, we will then be able to assess which ones are more interesting for the company. With each step, we learn and evaluate what the next step will be. At the beginning, we made salmon from bio-gels and food dyes, although we were told that there would be more marketable if we made tuna or shrimp. Because of this lack of market knowledge, what we decided to do and continue doing is to let ourselves be advised by experts like Eatable Adventures, and shift when we decide to do so. 

In the long term, I don’t know what we will do at Cocuus. What is clear to me is that the future of cell reproduction will be marked by factories that produce mass quantities of cells in short periods of time by just passing through bioreactors. There is where Cocuus wants to be, making these technologies to convert those cells into final products. At least today, we don’t contemplate making final products for the consumer; our focus is exclusively on developing machines and technologies for others. We are happy with what we do, but the door is always open to a “Refocus Cocuus”.

 

demoday mylkcubator

The first edition of Mylkcubator, the incubation program launched by Pascual Innoventures in collaboration with Eatable Adventures, has held its eagerly anticipated Demo Day event showcasing the advances of the first cohort of startups, at its headquarters in Manoteras, Madrid.

The program not only showcased pioneering dairy projects around the world but also laid the foundation for a new path of development and innovation for the industry to face some of its greatest challenges.

As a culmination of the six-month incubation program, the participating startups presented their final pitches, paving the way for future funding rounds that will allow them to pursue their innovative development and research:  

  • De Novo Dairy, a startup based in South Africa with a mission to create the future of nutrition, the company uses precise fermentation technology to produce animal-free dairy proteins that provide the same sensory experience and nutrition as traditional dairy counterparts. De Novo Dairy is currently developing high-value proteins for the dairy industry.
  • Spanish startup Real Deal Milk develops casein and whey proteins through precision fermentation technologies with the same functional properties as traditional dairy components, with the aim to produce dairy substitutes equivalent to traditional dairy. 
  • Using bioengineering & microbial fermentation, Zero Cow Factory is reinventing dairy ingredients with India’s first milk and milk products (certainly the world’s first A2 milk protein) using bioengineering the microbes & microbial fermentation. The Zero Cow team is developing a proprietary technique to recreate milk proteins to develop real dairy products that are ethical, safe, delicious, and identical to cow milk.
  • Pure™ Mammary Factors based in the USA are accelerating the state of the art in cell-cultured dairy by crashing the cost of production by the development of growth factors used in culture media. The startup aims to make cell-cultured human milk affordable and accessible by selling food-grade off-the-shelf growth factors around the world.

Pascual Innoventures is committed to driving innovation to create a more sustainable future for all, anticipating the current trends that will shape the foods of the future. Due to the success of the first edition of Mylkcubator, Pascual Innoventures has already announced the call for the second edition of the program.

According to Sejal Ravji, director of Pascual Innoventures, “the success of the Mylkcubator Demo Day not only reaffirms the great response this program has had in the sector worldwide but also confirms what we at Innoventures already knew, in order to develop the dairy products of the future we have to continue to invest in transformational innovation and ambitious technological projects, as is the case with the four startups that have been working with us since the start of Mylkcubator six months ago”.

Furthermore, according to Jose Luis Cabañero, founder and CEO of Eatable Adventures, “In the coming years, we expect to see increased innovation in the alternative protein space, with breakthroughs in cellular agriculture and precision fermentation technologies. Mylkcubator is a pioneering global program that is and will continue to be at the forefront of developing the dairy of the future.”

With the growing demand from the population to eat more and more sustainably, fungi-based meat is one of the new alternatives being pursued by many companies, with the aim of mimicking the taste and texture of real meat. 

Innomy, an Argentinan-based startup located in Spain, is using fungal tissue cultures combined with precision fermentation technology to create complex structures that replicate the fibrous and tender consistency of meat. Created in laboratories, fungi-based meat relies on the mycelium, which is a network of fine filaments that are similar to the muscles of animals. The company modifies the shape, color, and flavor of the filamentous structures in mycelial matrices to make products that taste like meat.

During our interview with Francisco Kuhar, CSO & Technology Partner of Innomy, whose company participated in our Accelerator Program in 2020, he explained how the program helped the company grow, the reasons they chose the fungi-based meat to create their product, and the best advice they received from our CEO, Jose Luis Cabañero. Read on to learn more about Innomy’s experience during the Eatable Adventures Accelerator Program.

 

What stage was Innomy at when you joined the Eatable Adventures Acceleration program? Can you tell us about the growth Innomy has had since participating in our acceleration program?

When Innomy joined the Eatable Adventures Acceleration program: ‘Spain Food Tech’, the development stage was at an advanced stage, but the team’s configuration as a startup was incipient and a lot of organizational work was needed to be able to expose itself to investors and the public. Working with CNTA in the framework of this program was a huge help, as this institution became a valuable partner along the way. The experience we gained from Eatable Adventures enabled us to develop a credible business proposal, as well as to organize the team, understand the language of communication, and present ourselves to investors. In addition, the contacts provided by the Program and the appearances at various events allowed us to increase our reach and access to financing and production proposals.

 

What has the Spanish foodtech ecosystem offered you to establish your company in Spain?

In particular, we felt very supported by the Basque ecosystem. Institutions such as Beaz, Talent, and the BIC of this community welcomed us and helped us in a very active way. On the other hand, Basque research institutions and industry have been very supportive and are allowing us to grow.

 

What are the advantages and benefits of using mycelium compared to other protein alternative raw materials on the market today?

The mycelium contains high-quality protein in terms of its amino acid composition, but also in the supply of vitamins, Beta-glucans, ergosterol, and other compounds whose health benefits include the maintenance of a competent immune system, lower cholesterol levels, and the availability of nutrients without the need for artificial additives.

What is the most valuable piece of advice José Luis has given you in our Acceleration Program?

José Luis taught us that talking with a product on the table is much more effective than communicating ideas or a project. Even if it needs to be improved, the product shows an anchor with the reality that is often valued in the European entrepreneurial environment. Our speech was crystallized into a solid demonstrable development, which changed the way investors or other partners listened to us.

Get your calendars ready for all the exciting foodtech events in 2022!

2021 proved the industry’s resilience when faced with a global pandemic by quickly shifting years of dynamic face-to-face events to an online format in a matter of months. Thankfully, we are slowly getting back to a pre-covid world and foodtech events all over the globe will mostly offer a hybrid in-person and online experience.

January

January 18-20
Fermentation-Enabled Alternative Protein Summit

This is the only industry-led event designed to scale-up production platforms to commercialize clean-label, animal-free, and regulatory-approved alternative meat, dairy, eggs, and functional protein ingredients. The in-person event will explore key challenges and opportunities in the successful commercialization of fermentation-enabled alternative proteins for human consumption.

March

March 8-10
The Future of Protein Production Summit

The Future of Protein Production Summit is an event targeting companies involved in making the global food system more sustainable. Over 1000 attendees are expected to converge online for the three-day virtual conference, which will showcase the latest research and trends to help develop sustainable production technologies and exploration of highly sustainable processes and solutions to help make the global food system more sustainable, kind, and fair for the planet, people, and animals.

Use our exclusive code FPPEAA20 to save 20% off your ticket. 

March 22-23
World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit

The event will take place in San Francisco and will gather 1,300+ global agri-food corporates, investors, and technology start-ups from around the world to uncover the most exciting innovations in the agri-food sector and to forge the right partnerships to take those solutions to market.

March 24-25
Future Food-tech San Francisco

The Future Food-Tech Summit has become the annual meeting place for the global food-tech ecosystem. Food brands, active investors, start-ups, and technology leaders come together to exchange insights, be inspired, and identify future partners.

You will be able to join in-person or online as it is a hybrid summit. This allows you to meet and collaborate on the same platform, opening up the summit to a bigger global network than ever before.

Use our exclusive code EA10 to save 10% off a delegate pass.

April

April 4-7
Alimentaria

Alimentaria is an international event of reference that takes place in Barcelona, Spain, for all professionals in the food, beverage, and foodservice industry that allows the attendees to be up-to-date with the latest food industry trends, promoting internationalization, innovation, gastronomy, and sector specialization.

April 27-29
Anuga Foodtec 

As the leading global trade fair, Anuga FoodTec, taking place in Cologne or online, is the most important source of impetus for the international food and beverage industry. As the world’s only supplier fair, it covers all aspects of food production. Here, the industry presents its latest innovations and technological visions – from process technology to filling and packaging technology to food safety, from packaging materials to digitalization and intralogistics. And beyond that, there’s plenty more to discover.

May

May 4-5
Rethinking Materials 2022

Join a world-class gathering of visionary CPG Brands, Retailers, Producers, Converters, Regulators, Innovators, and Investors focused on scaling bio-based and circular solutions in plastics & packaging. Whether in-person in London or online anywhere in the world, all delegates will be able to meet and collaborate on the same platform.

Use our exclusive code EatableAdventures10 to get 10% off your ticket. 

May 10-12
Bridge2Food Plant-Based Foods & Proteins Summit Americas

Bridge2Food brings together key leaders from all along the value chain who are working to drive transformation. Join the three-day event to learn the latest innovations and research, find solutions and strategies, grow your network, and discover where the plant-based sector is heading next.

May 12-13
FoodHack Summit 2022

A 2-day event in Lausanne bringing together the world’s best and brightest food tech founders, leaders, and innovators. You will network with the best and brightest minds in FoodTech, discover upcoming startups and taste the latest industry innovations.

Use our exclusive code EATABLE-15 for a 15% discount on all ticket types.

May 16-17
New Food Forum

The New Food Forum at Frankfurt, is a bite-sized item on the program of the newly established IFFA Factory area, providing insights into the developments in the alternative-protein sector at IFFA, the world’s leading trade fair for the meat industry.

May 17-19
Food4Future

Food 4 Future, in Bilbao, is the place to be for any professional in the food industry and its value chain, where you can acquire the latest and most promising food technology applications, robotics and automation, data technology or processing techniques. The event aims to be the platform to discover the latest innovations and trends that are driving the transformation of the food industry.

May 18-19
F&A Next

F&A Next is about thought leadership and connecting promising start-ups and scale-ups, dedicated to food & agtech investors and innovative corporates. Expect top executives and opinion leaders to discuss the impact of innovation in the agrifood industry and consumer behavior. Plus, selected startups will be presented as the Next Heroes in Food- & AgTech.

 

June

June 1-2
Sweden Foodtech BigMeet

Expect five days of bold ideas, stunning demos, and insightful comments galore! You will meet key actors in the private sector, government, and grassroots initiatives.

Use our discount code BIGMEET20 for a 20% discount on your ticket.

June 13-14
Food Innovate Milan

Join a global network of food innovators and discover how to distinguish your product in a saturated market, achieve a cleaner label without sacrificing taste or tradition, discover and define the latest trends in consumer behavior and buying patterns across the world, enhance product formulation with some of the most innovative and exciting ingredients, plan your product life-cycle journey with break-through technologies, and much more!

Use our discount code EA895 for more than 50% off your ticket. 
This code will need to be inserted on the third page of the booking form, where it says ‘Enter promotional code’.

June 20-22
Bridge2Food Plant-Based Foods & Proteins Summit Europe

Bridge2Food brings together key leaders from all along the value chain who are working to drive transformation. Join the three-day event to learn the latest innovations and research, find solutions and strategies, grow your network, and discover where the plant-based sector is heading next.

June 21-22
Future Foodtech Alternative Proteins

Future Foodtech Alternative Proteins will take place in New York, connecting global food leaders to map out the future of protein. They will be focusing on three key pillars: plant-based, cell-based, and microbial fermentation. You should expect different discussions that will explore all facets of alternative proteins, providing a comprehensive overview of key players, markets, and solutions, handling topics from ingredient discovery and product formulation to regulation, communication, and commercialization

June 28-29
World Agritech Latam

World Agri-Tech Latam will connect international agri-food leaders to advance financial and environmental sustainability across the value chain. Join this event in São Paulo!

September

August 30 – September 1
Industrializing Cultivated Meats & Seafood Summit

Industrializing Cultivated Meats & Seafood will host the industry leaders from Food Techs, Investors, Multinational Consumer Packaged Goods, and Food Brands and Manufacturers, to focus on preparing for Cultivated Meat & Seafood Commercialization.

If you are creating a new cultivated meat or seafood product, looking to scale-up your current process to the industrial level, waiting on regulatory approval to go to market, or wishing to build new partnerships to optimize your processes, this is the go-to forum to attend in person in 2022.

September 16-19
Edible Planet Ventures

The Edible Planet Ventures Summit in Italy brings industry leaders and activists together alongside visionaries and change-makers, to set the table for a radically different food system.

Coming from all corners of the globe and all points in the food chain, our participants are a symbol of the progress that can be achieved through collaboration and innovation.

September 20-21
World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit London

World Agri-Tech will bring together leading agribusinesses, co-operatives, CPG brands, entrepreneurs, investors, and policy makers to accelerate the transition to sustainable and resilient agri-food systems.

Two days of full in-person sessions and networking including panel debates, roundtables, fireside chats, start-up pitching and 1-1 meetings.

Use code EAFRIEND to get an extra 10% off ticket price.

September 22-23
Future Food-Tech London

Join 500+ C-Suite food brand executives, investors, and entrepreneurs from around the globe working together to scale solutions in health, nutrition, and alternative proteins. The next Future Food-Tech event will be in London!

Use our codeEA10 to get an extra 10% off ticket price.

September 27-29
VertiFarm

VertiFarm is making its début as the first and only dedicated trade show for Vertical Farming & New Food Systems. Starting in 2022, Messe Dortmund is filling this gap, bringing together knowledge, technology, R&D and networking opportunities at the heart of the Ruhr, one of Germany’s key logistics hubs.

Secure one of the exclusive 250 tickets for the Summit now, with free access to the exhibition and complimentary catering. Help shape the future of Vertical Farming and New Food Systems!

September 29-30
New Food Conference

The New Food Conference is a unique, industry-oriented event that aims to accelerate and empower these innovative food technologies by bringing together key stakeholders.  The New Food Conference team is excited to welcome leading pioneers in the alternative-protein realm to Berlin – on-site and in-person – with a program packed with insights, an exhibition space, a startup area, food tastings, and loads of networking opportunities.

October

October 3-8
Festival dell’Innovatzione Agroalimentare

The Festival is a 6 day online event created by FoodHub Magazine to share the latest innovations in Italian agrifood stakeholders.

It is the origin point of the MOVEMENT that brings together professionals from scientific research and industry to innovate in the agri-food sector.

At Food Hub, they care about the agri-food sector. As a benefit company, they are committed to making the latest innovations in the agri-food sector accessible to the market, believing in the sector, and investing in the professional growth of all agri-food stakeholders. For these reasons you can participate in the Festival for free.

October 4-5
NutrEvent

NutrEvent is the leading European business convention dedicated to innovation in Food, Feed, Nutrition and Health gathering 650 actors from research to market, with the objective to promote today’s products, process and services and identify tomorrow’s innovations.

The event will be hybrid, you can attend in person on October 4-5 (Nantes, France), or you can connect to the 100% online event on October 11.

October 17
Boosting alternative protein in Spain

The first FoodHack meetup in Madrid with prominent guests from the new protein sector: Heura, Pink Albatross, Innomy, Zyrcular Foods.

This is a great business opportunity. People, consumers are increasingly aware of the impact of their food, both in terms of the environment and in terms of health, so they are increasingly demanding food according to their concerns and lifestyles.

Those attending the first FoodHack Meetup in Madrid will have the opportunity to hear stories of successful entrepreneurs working on the future of food from Spain.

The event is free but registration is required.

October 26-28
Asia Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit

In its fourth year, the Asia-Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit will bring together the world’s leading agribusinesses, growers, CPG and ingredient brands, entrepreneurs, investors, retailers, and policymakers to share ideas and collaborate towards greater security and sustainability in Asia’s agri-food system.

Save 10% with our partner code EAT10

November

November 1-4
Web Summit

At a time of great uncertainty for many industries and, indeed, the world itself, this event gathers the founders and CEOs of technology companies, fast-growing startups, policymakers, and heads of state to ask a simple question: Where to next?
This year will be held in Lisbon, make sure you don’t miss it!

November 7
FoodTechIL

FoodTechIL is the main event of the Israeli FoodTech ecosystem.

After long anticipation, FoodTech IL 2022 will bring the entire community – entrepreneurs, investors, food industry leaders, government officials, researchers and service providers, together under one roof.

November 8
Agrivest

With its 10th anniversary, AgriVest is proud to keep the pulse of the agtech ecosystem in Israel! Bringing together hundreds of investors and multinational corporations with the most cutting-edge innovations in the agtech field.

AgriVest provides an array of opportunities for knowledge sharing, networking, exploring collaboration opportunities, and countless interactions on the frontier of innovative technologies, making it a must-attend event for the ecosystem.

Use our promo code AGRIVESTMEDIAEA10 to get a 10% discount.

November 28-30
Bridge2Food Plant-Based Foods & Proteins Summit Asia

Bridge2Food brings together key leaders from all along the value chain who are working to drive transformation. Join the three-day event to learn the latest innovations and research, find solutions and strategies, grow your network, and discover where the plant-based sector is heading next.

November 30- December 1
Plant-Based World Conference

This is the only 100% plant-based event for trade professionals – retailers, food service, hospitality, distributors, manufacturers, and investors. Network with professionals who have successfully embarked on both personal and professional plant-based journeys, many of whom have created some of the world’s most revolutionary plant-based products and foods. Share experiences, learn from peers, and immerse yourself in a truly collaborative industry. 

December

December 6-8
Fi Europe

Discover innovative products and solutions from 1000+ exhibitors, and hear firsthand from them at the Exhibitor Showcases. Stay updated on the latest industry trends through the comprehensive agenda of live and on-demand content sessions from global experts, and build relationships by networking with current and prospective business partners, thought leaders, and industry peers.

We will be regularly updating this article with foodtech events in 2022 as they come along! Make sure you don’t miss any of them!

The first incubation program for consumer packaged foods and beverages in the city of Madrid has launched, promoting entrepreneurship, innovation and technology in the food sector. It is a pioneering experience in the world that will revolutionize the industry from our city, by Madrid Food Innovation Hub.

This incubation program is dedicated to projects developing packaged food products and packaged beverages by applying new technologies during formulation and/or production. They also may be accompanied by the development of new business models in the digital environment that allows a direct relationship with the consumer and the disintermediation of the sale of these innovative products. 

The selected startups must have the ambition to revolutionize the sector, and have a very clear focus on the commercial viability of the projects and their contribution to the industry, with a real impact on the economy and society. The program is focused on the establishment and consolidation of new companies. 

 

What kind of projects is the program looking for?

  • Packaged products with a focus on sustainability.
  • Foods or beverages with a positive effect on health (extra energy intake, proteins, superfoods…).
  • Products with improved nutritional composition (short list of ingredients or without superfluous additives).
  • Ready-to-eat or easy-to-prepare foods and beverages (snacks/prepared meals).

Who is the program aimed at?

The incubator is aiming to receive projects with less than 12 months of life, still in the idea phase or projects that need to transform/pivot. Also, innovative projects developing packaged food and beverages, responding to new consumer needs.

Some of the areas considered of interest may be:

  • Packaged products with a focus on sustainability.
  • Foods or beverages with a positive effect on health (extra energy intake, proteins, superfoods, etc.).
  • Products with improved nutritional composition (short ingredient lists or without superfluous additives).
  • Ready-to-eat or easy-to-prepare foods and beverages (snacks/prepared meals).

Projects that will also be especially valued include having advanced business models that allow a direct relationship with consumers and facilitate access to these new products; projects that have an ambitious team willing to scale their project; projects that have not yet received their first investment or are planned as self-employment projects; and projects promoted by unemployed or economically vulnerable people will be especially valued. All projects must be based in the Community of Madrid.

What does the program offer?

A 12-week personalized theoretical and practical program in which participants will enjoy a free coworking space in Madrid Food Innovation Hub, located in the Villaverde district of Madrid, equipped with a kitchen and laboratory with everything necessary for concept testing.

Participants will also benefit from weekly tutorials with the program director to advance in the development of the project, in addition to mentoring sessions with experts. They will also have access to the largest network of food entrepreneurs with more than 25,000 people.

Moreover, there will be a demo day to present the projects and test days with consumers. This wil include a network of potential investors, venture capitals, business angels and corporations.

 

Visit the website for more information!