Food Loss Challenge, an open innovation challenge agri-tech startups in Asia and launched recently by Dutch bank Rabobank, has announced the 20 startups, which will pitch on 26 October 2018 in Singapore, with the top-5 going to the finale on 15 November 2018.
These startups will pitch their ideas to reduce food loss to food & agri industry leaders and investors. The challenge takes on the global problem of food loss, keeping an eye on the target of UN Sustainable Development Goal 12.3, which aims to halve food loss by 2030.
Diane Boogaard, CEO Asia of Rabobank, said: “With the population in Asia projected to reach over five billion by 2050, we rely on innovative and technological solutions to help us curb food loss along the value chain and promote the sustainable development of rural prosperity in the region. Through our networks, we connect startups to our corporate and rural clients to help us in our strive to growing a better world together.”
Mark van Binsbergen, CEO of Rabobank Singapore and one of the judges at the event, said: “This is Rabobank’s first Food Loss Challenge event globally. We received an overwhelming number of 127 submissions from 29 countries across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe. The quality of submissions is very impressive. We came across many good proposals to address food loss, not only at the producer’s level but also across the whole supply chain.”
“The startups demonstrated an ability to deploy their technology with the awareness of how it would add value to their end-users,” said Arindom Datta, Asia Head of Sustainability Banking, and member of the Food Loss Challenge Asia project team. “Whilst the 127 solutions put forth addressed pain points along the food value chain, notably logistics, storage and refrigeration, many focused on enabling data-driven farm management especially for the small holder farming community. Many startups are trying to provide critical holistic solutions addressing the issue of food loss integrating diverse players in the supply chain.”
The shortlisted startups stand a chance to win US$15,000 jury’s prize and/or the US$5,000 audience prize at the finale.
The 20 shortlisted companies are:
AgUnity: AgUnity streamlines farmer co-operative operations by putting a simple distributed cryptoledger mobile app in the hands of every small farmer.
AptaCam: AptaCam creates universal test standards for molecular diagnostic using bio-sensing, hardware and cloud infrastructure. It also provides diagnostic reagents and portable devices.
BharatRohan Airborne Innovations: BharatRohan collects unique data from agricultural farms and converts them into actionable information and reports to enable industrial producers to reduce crop loss, optimise agri-inputs and maximise yield and profit margin using UAV-based hyperspectral imaging.
CropIn Technology Solutions: CropIn is an intuitive, self-evolving system that delivers future-ready farming solutions to the entire agricultural sector. With capabilities of live reporting, analysis, interpretation and insight that span across geographies, its solution digitises every farm, while data-managing the entire ecosystem.
Distinct Horizon: Distinct is a powered applicator for a fertiliser application method called urea/fertiliser deep placement (UDP/FDP) for rice farming.
Eachmile Technologies : Eachmile uses mobile technology to provide fishers and farmers the data they need to improve their livelihoods, and connects each link of otherwise fragmented supply chains.
Ecozen Solutions: Ecozen provides renewable energy-based products that can store and transport perishables along the value chain.
Elixia Tech Solutions: Elixia provides customised solutions for transportation, logistics and supply chain management across industries by converting accurate and real-time data actionable business intelligence.
Ergos: Ergos is a grid of rural medium and micro warehouses at farm-gate across the geography for storage, credit access, and forward linkages.
Grameen Intel Social Business: Grameen builds innovative tech solutions for social impact in the areas of agriculture, health and education, bringing the power of technology to the development frontier. The Soil Master has been designed to digitise the guesswork out of soil evaluation, using a combination of sensors and colorimetry to evaluate the level of pH and certain nutrients in the soil in an extremely short time with high accuracy.
HARA: HARA is an open blockchain-based data exchange for the food sector that incentivises and enables everyone from farmers to manufacturers to retailers to make better data-driven decisions.
Impact Terra: Impact Terra develops, implements, and teaches mobile-based solutions for farmers, agribusinesses and other agricultural stakeholders to improve food security and the livelihoods of rural populations.
Intello Labs: Intello helps farmers grade their produce and empower them to demand a fair price by leveraging advanced analytics tools and techniques (deep learning and artificial intelligence) onto images captured by farmers.
Jayalaxmi Agrotech: Jayalaxmi reduces the information gap in agriculture by communicating with farmers in their regional languages.
KrishiHub: KrishiHub is an AI-powered mobile app which helps farmers explore crop prices and weather forecasts, create and monitor their farms on app, and get tips for growing crops.
MyCrop Technologies: MyCrop is an interlinked top-down interface where the activities and output at the individual grassroot level can be monitored and analysed to achieve optimum results.
Promethean Power Systems: Promethean manufactures and supplies cold storage and milk chilling equipment for dairy industry. Its products include milk chillers and cold storage solutions which use patented Promethean thermal storage system technology that uses thermal batteries and solar power solutions and can cool up to 1000 litres of milk.
Pula Advisors: Pula develops and distributes bundles of financial and agronomic services for smallholder farmers. The bundle includes agricultural inputs, insurance and precision agronomic advisory.
Solentum B.V:. Solentum creates science-based tools and services to increase economic value (e.g. through quality controls or process efficiencies) for companies in the potato value chain.
Tun Yat: Tun Yat is an online platform which connects farmers (who want to rent agricultural machines) and machine suppliers (either big suppliers or individual suppliers).