Tag Archive for: food startups

The second edition of Baking the Future kicks off with four new startups

  •  After the success of the first edition, Cereal, the Innovation Center of Europastry welcomes again four startups with revolutionary projects that will change the bakery sector.
  •  The Israeli startup DouxMatok offers nutrition improvements through sugar reduction solutions; Spanish AgroSingularity develops vegetal-origin sustainable fibers that prolong the useful life of bread. Belgian Ajinomatrix digitizes the measurement of the senses of taste and smell through AI and Colombian Sacha Inchi develops products through innovative crops that satisfy the growing market of superfoods.
  • The startups selected will participate for six months in the Baking the Future program, a period where they will receive tutoring, advice, and business development.

Barcelona, November 30th, 2022.- After the success of the first edition of the acceleration program Baking the Future, Cereal, the Europastry Innovation Center welcomes again four startups with revolutionary projects that will change the bakery sector.

This year, applications from 11 different countries have been submitted, among which DouxMatok from Israel, Ajinomatrix from Belgium, AgroSingularity from Spain, and Sacha Inchi from Colombia, have been selected.

INNOVATION IN HEALTH, TECHNOLOGY, AND BAKERY SUSTAINABILITY 

The projects from the four startups give solutions to the challenges we set when we launch the second edition of the program: sustainability, health, improvement of the customer experience, and technologies aimed at seeking to improve production without losing quality. 

  •   DouxMatok, the Israeli startup, offers nutrition improvements through sugar reduction solutions. The perfect response to consumers’ preferences, for a tasteful experience and healthier food.  
  •   Belgian Ajinomatrix has digitized the measurement of the senses of taste and smell through AI. Which becomes an essential tool to obtain data that will allow companies in the food sector to take accurate and fast decisions.
  •  AgroSingularity, the Spanish startup, has developed vegetal-origin sustainable fibers that prolong the useful life of bread. Additionally, it allows the preservation of the nutrients and functional attributes of the original plant of the ingredients.
  •   Lastly, Sacha Inchi offers solutions to the needs of the growing superfood market through innovative crops of Latin American biodiversity. 

SIX MONTHS TO REVOLUTIONIZE THE BAKERY INDUSTRY

The objective of Baking the Future is to build an open innovation model for Europastry. “We continue to bet on open innovation, a fundamental tool for collaboration with entrepreneurs and our R&D teams to design and escalate the future of the bakery industry” states Ana Thielen, International Marketing Manager at Europastry

Over the next six months the entrepreneurs of the four startups will have all the company resources: workspace, mentoring sessions with the teams of Cereal, Eatable Adventures, and Google. Access to the R&D&I department of Europastry to develop, test, and launch the product to check its viability in the market.  

“Thanks to Baking the Future, we brought entrepreneurs from all over the world to   Cereal, to respond to the current challenges of the Bakery sector. We are sure that thanks to the collaboration of Europasty and its  I&D team these startups will be able to develop innovative solutions, capable of generating great impact in the sector and reach a global scale” affirms José Luis Cabañero Founder & CEO of Eatable Adventures.

After six months of preparation, during the celebration of Demo Day, the four startups will present their projects to a network of private investors and highly qualified experts.

Webinar ICEX

Webinar: New ingredients- shaping the future of food from Spain

WEBINAR

25/10/2022. Online 

Free entry, registration required. 

9:00AM CET

18:00PM  CET

 

ICEX Spain Trade & Investment is hosting a webinar on “New ingredients: shaping the future of food from Spain” featuring five Spanish startups, and one of the leading technological centers, that are disrupting the food industry by using the most innovative technologies to create the foods of the future, in the most sustainable way.

WHY PARTICIPATE

Today, technology in the food industry is an essential part of food production processes. As food is becoming more wellness-oriented, consumers are increasingly opting for foods and beverages that, in addition to providing satisfaction and pleasure in eating, also offer health functions or benefits. To meet this demand, entrepreneurs and large industries are in the need of innovating and producing certain functional foods, and in some cases introducing new ingredients to the market which have specific health attributes through new technologies such as cellular agriculture, fermentation and artificial intelligence.

This initiative aims to strengthen the network of the Spanish foodtech industry, to showcase it to the world, and highlight success stories and interesting projects from other countries to enhance collaboration.

AGENDA

Where Via online
When To ensure that you do not miss this chance to learn more about the Spanish food tech ecosystem, we are offering you two time slots at 9AM and 6PM CET.

9.00AM CET Webinar #1: Shaping the future of food from Spain

18.00PM CET Webinar #2: Shaping the future of food from Spain

Registration Registration is completely free. Please register at the following link:

9.00 AM CET: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_6LQmKDQjQiSOS-abCzoKog

18.00PM CET: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-PexbwSjTiGcQN6paT8l_A

SPEAKERS

Bread Free

Daniel Gomez Bravo, CEO – Bread Free  

Bread Free:  Bread free is a startup formed by young entrepreneurs who, through an innovative process, have managed to process cereals with gluten to separate this component from the rest of the food so that it can be consumed by people with celiac disease. 

Bio:  Daniel Gómez-Bravo is the CEO and technology developer of BREAD FREE S.L. He is a graduate in Biotechnology, Master in Health Information Engineering, and has experience in Research Centers such as the Center for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics. Daniel is fully involved in the use of Biotechnology to solve a real problem in the market, and a primary need of the gluten-free population. He has an economic, business and legal background backed by his training at the European Business and Innovation Center of Navarra (CEIN). With international prospection, he seeks to direct the company’s technology towards foreign markets, and thus be able to help as many people as possible.

 

The Good Cubes

Manuel Diez de Oñate De Toro, CEO – The Good Cubes (Origin Algae

Origin Algae: With the help of technology, Origin Algae provide the means and resources necessary to start producing spirulina, or to optimize your crops in an intelligent way.

Bio: Manuel graduated in industrial engineering at the University of Seville, where he began his career in the algae sector working in a spin-off of the university where he studied processes to make the production of algae more efficient in a sustainable way. After working for this company and for the Air Force as an intern in the Quality Department, he decided to take the leap to Sweden to study a master’s degree in business and entrepreneurship. At the end of this process, Manuel had already begun to undertake projects in real estate and music, but it was from the end of 2021 when he decided to undertake his current project focused on food based on algae for human consumption, Origin Algae (The Good Cubes).

Ingredalia

Miguel Ángel Cubero Márquez, CEO – Ingredalia 

Ingredalia develops and produce natural functional ingredients from plant by-products of agri-food companies for use in the food, cosmetic, nutraceutical and pet industries. With sustainability and circular economy as the cornerstones of our activity, Ingredalia obtain, natural functional ingredients, extracts, and healthy additives. 

Bio: He has developed his professional career as a technician, advancing from the position of laboratory manager to R&D Director at Indulleida for more than 10 years. He has been part of the Technical Management and held other management positions in other companies, such as aroma companies and other food industries; he has also been working as an associate professor at the University of Lleida, as well as visiting professor from 2008 to the present. He has developed and led various R&D projects, directing the creation of new lines and following the industrial development of the companies in which he has worked. Therefore, he has extensive experience in moving from an R&D project to an industrial reality. He has been the full-time General Director of the company since February 2020, assuming full responsibility for the fulfillment of the business plan. 

Sanygran

Roselyne Chane, Director – Sanygran 

Sanygran produce extruded food based on legumes and cereals, highlighting their nutritional and environmental benefits. Their vegetable protein has now become the basis of all our products due to its protein content, source of fiber, low level of saturated fats, as well as being gluten and lactose-free and manufactured in Spain. All this, without forgetting the positive impact it has on our health and that of the environment, by using less water resources than animal protein and reducing greenhouse gases from livestock farming, while promoting biodiversity and animal subsistence.

Bio: With +18 years of managing experience In Sales, Marketing, Innovation and Business development in the Food industry, Roselyne is now the Managing Director of Alimentos Sanygran, a Spanish Vegtech company specialized in plant-based foods and ingredients.

She believes in spending her time, energy and money in projects that impact positively on the planet and its people and this is why she also invests in foodtech, biotech and renewable energy companies.

Tebrio

Adriana Casillas, CEO – TEBRIO 

Tebrio: Spanish biotechnology company that is building an 80.000 square meter insect farm – the largest of its kind in the world, which, in line with our pilot operations, will breed and transform mealworms into 3 main co-products: (i) amino rich, sustainable premium protein for petfood, fishmeal and animal feed, (ii) tech powered biofertilizer for plant nutrition and (iii) chitosan for biodegradable plastic manufacturing. 

Bio: Adriana Casillas is CEO and Co-Funder of Tebrio. During her professional life, she has developed successfully different technological projects both in USA and Spain, related to industries such as art or food. She is also actively involved in interactions with the European Commission, EFSA and other European stakeholders for the development of the insect industry in Europe through her position as President of IPIFF, the International Platform of Insects for Food and Feed, based in Brussels. Adriana  holds a Bachelor’s degree in classical and contemporary music, MBA and Executive Master in Agri-Food Business Management from ESMUC, Johns Hopkins University and the IME Business School of the University of Salamanca, respectively.

AZTI

Carolina Najar, Food Market Director – AZTI

Azti conducts strategic and applied research in an international context, providing comprehensive and innovative solutions to its clients. AZTI’s mission is to transform science into sustainable and healthy development for present and future societies.

Bio Entrepreneur and business woman specialized in food industry and gastronomy of the national, European, and latinoamerican markets. She has experience in the GMCP (Gross Market Consumption Products) sector, where she has held different positions within the management team in the commercial and marketing areas. Foodtech investor. Teacher at Cámarabilbao University Business School. Founder of Baiba, a consultancy specialized in food, mentor al EIT Food and other incubation and acceleration programs. Since 2021 she is the director of food market at the technological center AZTI. 

 

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FONDO EUROPEO DE DESARROLLO REGIONAL (FEDER).                                      A way of making Europe
This service/activity is eligible for co-financing from Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER)

 

Pink Albatross

Pink Albatross, Interview with Co-Founder, Pepe Biaggio

We know that behind every startup there is a mission to accomplish and we would like to know a little more about what is behind Pink Albatross.

1. Tell us briefly what Pink Albatross is. Describe the main milestones throughout your development.

In Pink Albatross we make delicious, indulgent ice cream, with plant-based ingredients, so natural you can even draw them. With no additives, no ultra-processed, no shortcuts. Gluten-free. Creamy, tasty, and suitable for all consumers.
For those with a demanding palate and who are conscious consumers, those who can’t eat ice cream because of diet restrictions (lactose intolerance, vegans, celiacs), or consumers concerned for the environment and animal rights.

Milestones:

  • 2018:
    • Pink Albatross is born
  • 2019:
    • launching the product with 5 flavors
  • 2020:
    • product reformulation, channel goal focus
  • 2021:
    • 5 new flavors
    • we arrive at SPAR in the Canary Islands, to Ametller, and to Getir
    • rebranding
    • we arrive in Portugal and the Philippines
  • 2022:
    • we arrive at Glovo
    • we arrive Carrefour, La Sirena, El Corte Inglés and Costco,
    • Pink Albatross arrives in Germany, The Netherlands, and Greece
    • new format 90 ml
    • winners of the Carrefour Plant-Based Contest and 2 Great Taste Awards
    • we multiply our sales by 3 compared to last year

2. ¿ What were the main difficulties or barriers that you found along the way to moving forward with this business? How did you go through with it?

We had to overcome 4 difficulties:

  1. Good product. The hard part was that the product was an ice cream ‘without being it’ not using the traditional processes and ingredients. Creating a plant-based ice cream wasn’t hard, what was difficult was achieving the texture and flavor, also doing it only using natural ingredients, clean label processes, and for it to have a reasonably useful life to work in a supermarket or convenience store. It’s hard to find providers with clean-label products and find a formula that guarantees optimal flavor and texture. But in addition, the revolution is that there’s no resignation: everyone at home likes it because of several reasons, it’s good, it doesn’t make you feel bad (even if you are lactose intolerant for example) and its sustainable with the environment (comparing it to a dairy-based ice cream).
  2. A good product does not guarantee anything but it’s a good start! It must be combined with a brand that connects with consumers and is creative and attractive. Especially in a saturated market. There’s a huge amount of work to do in brand awareness and brand affinity. Network, special campaigns, contests, media, communications…
  3. All of this, mixed with a good distribution: when you are small company, the market doesn’t trust you. The shelves are small, so filling them with a product without knowing whether it will work is difficult. It takes a while and a big effort to get support from the market and merchants.
  4. To do all this you need people. People who are in love with the project, who believe in what they’re trying to achieve, who want to change things, who are involved, and that have initiative and desire. Because there is a lot of work
    and many hours to be able to do everything we said.

3. Taking into account the importance of ecosystems to be able to develop innovation, how would you describe the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Spain? What advantages and disadvantages do you see in this ecosystem?

As time passes, Spain’s entrepreneurial ecosystem grows, different organizations and funds make mentors, advisors, and consolidated players with great experience and knowledge available to startups. The key points to learn to analyze certain metrics better and learn to pay attention to those aspects that allow you to grow faster, stronger, and in a sustainable way.
There is more and more development in the food world. Cases of success like Komvida or Smileat help us understand some paths that can be followed. I think what is truly beautiful about entrepreneurship and the startup ecosystem is that everyone wants to help each other, we work together to make this change happen. Nevertheless, there is still a lot of room for improvement. A great percentage of startups born in Spain never get to consolidate. Additionally, moving to other locations is not easy and there is little knowledge about internationalization. For this is necessary to go to international accelerators and funds that help you to strengthen the business.

4. What opportunities for improvement do you think can come up?

A clear one is that there is little interaction between startups of different sizes and experiences. Learning from the more advanced ones is far more helpful than talking to an expert since they live the business as you do, inspiring you to help those who are behind you with pleasure (pay it forward).

We have created a small group and we try to meet and catch up every now and then, grab dinner, and talk. We also take the role of psychologists; being an entrepreneur is problematic on a personal, familiar, and financial level. Talking with people who are
walking your same path helps you not to feel that lonely and to support each other.

5. Do you think it has changed in the last few years?

Without a doubt! A few years ago communication was not encouraged. Accelerators like Eatable Adventures or Lanzadera help to build and promote this ecosystem of positive feedback. Spain, with its culinary culture, still can be more of a benchmark at a
European level for new trends in food. In addition, I think there’s still methodology missing, understanding the tools and using them to improve the productivity of each person working in a startup. There is still lots of work to uplift courage and desire to learn from new generations so that they want to start a business, and know what to do to raise it from the ground up and the sacrifice it takes.

6. In the past few years, we heard the word AgriFoodTech as the revolution of the food industry. Let’s talk about what this word means to you. How would you define it?

It’s exactly that, the revolution of the food industry. What is missing is, for what purpose? The basis for my decision is either the sustainability factor or inclusivity of the proposal at the consumer level (allergies, etc.) or the minimization or elimination of exploitation of living beings (animals, humans). For us to do something without any further objective simply because it’s more profitable is not AgriFoodTech.

7. Do you think its development can change the Spanish food industry? How so?

Without doubt. We want to eliminate dairy from the ice cream world. There is no need to use it and exploit animals. Without products, we can improve the digestion of many people and at the same time make less environmental impact. This is achieved first with a TOP product, then communicating the benefits, making people try it, and when they try it wanting to repeat it.

8. What do you think should be the fundamental support for this to happen?

There is a lot that can be done:

  • Access to short-term financing lines to finance working capital. In food industries there is more or less seasonality but there is a need to buy stock (raw materials and finished product), hold it for a period of time and then, when selling it, wait a few months to get paid. This can be a process of 2 to 6 months. Today it is financed with investors, so both they and the founders lose part of our stake in the company when we finance working capital with long-term investors who enter the capital.
  • Personnel: having greater support for hiring by supporting the hiring of employees in startups, for example with lower social security contributions or lower personal income tax. If we grow and incorporate more personnel, we are creating wealth. We need something that encourages hiring and that does not cost so much. In this way we encourage both that a person wants to work in a startup and also to be able to hire more and better people.
  • R&D&I projects: the current existing lines are restrictive, support large investments and are designed more for SMEs than for startups.
  • Promote, on the part of public entities, certain basic objectives as a society to which the distribution channels must subscribe (so that there is a real impact). For example, sustainability objectives that are so important for the subsistence of the planet and the species itself, in addition to the diversity of flora and fauna that we are destroying.
  • Facilitate entrepreneurship with less onerous regimes than the existing self-employed. And that, therefore, it is attractive to undertake.

 

Meet the Alumni: Le Room Service

 

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.

Baking the Future seeks startups for its second edition 

  • Baking the Future, Europastry’s startup acceleration program, begins the selection process for its second edition with Google Cloud and Eatable Adventures as collaborators.
  • Google Cloud, which recently landed in Barcelona, will collaborate hand in hand with Cereal and its accelerator Baking the Future, to boost the digital transformation of bakery startups.
  • The startups chosen for this second edition will enjoy a workspace, mentoring sessions, access to Europastry’s R&D department and will gain global impact through direct contact with the most relevant agents of the bakery industry value chain.

 

Baking the Future, Europastry’s startup acceleration program, opens the selection process for its second edition, which aims to find the next startups that will revolutionize the bakery sector.

After the success of the first program’s edition, we have teamed up with two collaborators that will bring a lot of value: Google Cloud and Eatable Adventures.

Google landed this June in Barcelona with a team of business consultants and experts in digital and cloud marketing to support and boost the digital transformation of companies by working and collaborating hand-in-hand with projects such as Baking the Future.

 Google Cloud will be close to the startups in the program, offering mentoring sessions, and providing support on its Cloud services. In addition to being part of the jury that will decide which startups will be with us in this second edition.

On the other hand, Eatable Adventures, the leading company in detecting and promoting the world’s most innovative and disruptive food startups, will offer entrepreneurship and business plan sessions.

 “We are proud to continue driving open innovation models with a leading global company like Europastry. Our collaboration started in 2019 with Baking the Future Challenge, a competition to improve processes and operations through the most disruptive startups in the industry and has derived into a more ambitious project with the accelerator program. Being able to activate a collaboration with Europastry, accessing an R&D center like Cereal, is a unique opportunity for any startup whose innovations and technologies apply to the bakery sector.” – Says José Luis Cabañero, Founder & CEO of Eatable Adventures.

 

SECOND EDITION OF THE BAKING THE FUTURE PROGRAM

The selected startups will enjoy:

  • A workspace in the Cereal, Europastry’s Innovation Center, equipped with the latest technology.
  • Mentoring sessions with highly qualified Cereal professionals from the R&D, commercial and marketing teams and the EaTable Adventures and Google Cloud teams.
  • Access to Europastry’s R&D department to develop, test and launch the product using the latest technologies to move from lab scale to pilot scale at Cereal’s facilities.
  • Global and direct project presentation with all the bakery’s industry value chain agents.

The drivers for these startups will be sustainability, improved customer experience, health and technologies aimed to improve production without losing sight of product quality.

Those interested in being part of the project can apply from today on the Baking the Future website.

 

INNOVATION AND EUROPASTRY

Innovation is part of our DNA. The company itself was born from an idea that revolutionized the bakery sector and since then, Europastry has always sought to be at the forefront of the sector, anticipating new trends and offering its customers the most disruptive products. “If you stop innovating you end up losing competitiveness and capacity for growth. That is why it is very important to keep reinventing yourself and never think that what you have is for life,” said Jordi Gallés.

Europastry currently invests 60 million euros a year in innovation and has one of the most avant-garde and pioneering R&D centers: Cereal.

“We have been part of the Baking the Future program and this is the result: a bread made with the flour of beer waste,” explains to us Aviaja, co-founder and CEO of Agrain, one of the startups accelerated in the first edition that came with a project that bet strongly on a more sustainable future of the food industry and that today already has a niche in the market. “Being part of Europastry has been a very good experience. We have met very astute and intelligent people who are passionate about the bakery sector.”

Mylkcubator, the global incubation program for cellular agriculture technologies in the dairy industry, kicks off its second cohort

The incubator will help the selected startups in their business and R&D advancement strategies, preparing them for growth and investment rounds.

Pascual, a leading Spanish manufacturer of dairy products and beverages, has launched Mylkcubator 2.0, the second edition of the global incubation program for cellular agriculture technologies in the dairy industry. The initiative has been launched from the group’s Corporate Venture unit, Pascual Innoventures, in collaboration with Eatable Adventures, one of the top three global foodtech accelerators. The first edition of the program had recently been completed by four disruptive startups worldwide.

Mylkcubator 2.0 will last 6 months, from selection to the demo day. The goal is to enroll a new cohort of up to 5 startups or scientific projects, with innovative solutions in the cellular agriculture spectrum for the dairy industry within the following technologies: molecular farming, fermentation based, cell based, and applied technologies in this field. All the details about the program are available on the official website mylkcubator.com.

Pascual Innoventures has flexible venturing models that build, collaborate and support Foodtech startups in its early stages. The incubator will help the selected startups in their business and R&D advancement strategies, preparing them for growth and investment rounds.

In the words of Gabriel Pascual, director of Pascual Innoventures “The quality of the startups selected in the first edition has been amazing and shows us that this is, clearly, the way to go. The visibility of these projects as well as the investment rounds that they are receiving is a sign that the industry is prepared for this technological transition. Pascual has been a pioneer in shaping the path of innovation and non-conformism. An attitude that has been hatched generation after generation from my grandfather until our generation”.

On the other hand, José Luis Cabañero, CEO and founder of Eatable Adventures, has remarked “Mylkcubator has attracted the attention of companies, technology centers and professional investors from all over the world demonstrating that there is a great opportunity in the market to implement scalable technological solutions to future proof the dairy industry”. Proof of this is that investment in the dairy segment has tripled in 2021, compared with 2020, according to Dealroom data analyzed by Eatable Adventures.

The production of dairy products using cell cultures and fermentation techniques, that are complementary within the dairy industry, demonstrate industrial and commercial viability and presents a huge opportunity for the sector from both an economic and environmental point of view.

 

Mylkcubator website: mylkcubator.com

Meet the Alumni: Moon Water

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.

Cocuus

Spanish startup Cocuus raises €2,5M in Funding to scale its 3D bioprinting technology for the production of alternative proteins

This round was led by Big Idea Ventures, Cargill Ventures, Eatable Adventures and Tech Transfer Agrifood.

The Spanish startup Cocuus has raised 2,5 million euros in its Pre Series A funding round for its innovative process for producing plant or cell- based animal protein food analogs. The company achieved this round after completing Eatable Adventures acceleration program, one of the top three globalaccelerators for foodtech startups.

The round was led by Big Idea Ventures, the global alternative protein fund, the U.S. multinational Cargill Ventures, the Spanish accelerator Eatable Adventures and Tech Transfer Agrifood. With a capital injection of this size, the startup can scale its business model and expand into other international markets, enabling them to utilize their disruptive 3D bioprinting and robotics technologies to create more sustainable and nutritious food products.

Patxi Larumbe, CEO and founder of Cocuus states “We are very proud to have attracted the interest of international investors with this round of financing. Thanks to this capital injection we will be able to bring our technology within reach of corporations that want to print proteins on an industrial scale”. In addition, the Founder and Managing General Partner of Big Idea Ventures, Andrew D Ive, also highlights “At Big Idea Ventures, we invest in technology which impacts the alternative protein industry’s entire value chain. Cocuus’ technology addresses a major pain point of structured plant- and cell-based meat production methods scalability. We are thrilled to support this innovative team and we look forward to
seeing their scalable food technology making an impact across the world.”

On the other hand, José Luis Cabañero, CEO and founder of Eatable Adventures notes, “The Spanish foodtech startups’ ecosystem is consolidating very quickly, attracting major investors and international corporations. Through Eatable Adventures, we offer our services to startups and corporations around the globe to accelerate the process of transformation and innovation in the food value chain”.

As Cabañero points out, this current environmental and world population scenario calls for a rethinking of production methods to achieve a much more sustainable and efficient food system. According to FAO data, in 2050, in order to feed a population of 9.1 billion, food production will have to increase by 70% and meat production by more than 200 million tons.

Cocuus, along with MOA Foodtech, Proppos, H2hydroponics, and Innomy have been selected as finalists for the first edition of Spain Foodtech, the acceleration program of Eatable Adventures supported by the National Center for Technology and Food Safety (CNTA) and ICEX Spain Export and Investment.

Cocuus has been awarded by the international Quality Innovation Award (QIA) in the category of Innovation in Microenterprises and Startups, after winning the 2021 national award.

Meet the Alumni: Proppos

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.

Meet the EAA Alumni: Innomy

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.