With further emphasis being placed on sustainability, health and local produce, the trillion-dollar food industry is continuously facing new challenges that require innovation

The industry is projected to be worth approx. $250 billion by 2022, with new startups consistently investing in new ways to research, explore and reduce the damage food waste and meat consumption has on our planet. Here are five sustainable food tech companies hoping to change the world.

Karana: Meat substitute

Looking to follow in the footsteps of Quorn and Beyond Meat, Singapore-based startup Karana are on a mission to create meat alternatives using jackfruit. The company raised $1.7 million in its first round of funding, with the goal to create a sustainable and delicious pork substitute which they plan to sell to restaurants in Asia. Jackfruit is just the start for Karana, whose plans for growth include further research into jackfruit and other Asian crops.

Yamo: Healthy baby food

After recently scoring $10.1 million in Series A investment, Yamo’s healthy baby food alternative is set to move into Europe’s biggest supermarkets in Switzerland, Germany and thanks to the recent round of funding, France. The company was developed by CEO Tobias Gunzenhauser, COO José Amado-Blanco and CMO Luca Michas who discovered a gap in the market for healthy, vegan baby food. Founded in 2016, the trio has set out to help parents make healthy and simple choices for their children, keeping sustainability in mind.

iFarm: Urban farming

As more of us live, work, and exist in urban environments, the question of how to grow fruit and vegetables in the concrete jungle has had agritech companies coming up with all kinds of innovation solutions. One startup that might have figured it out is iFarm. The company seeks to create urban farms for personal (or even commercial) use, and wants them to one day be as commonplace in households as computers. iFarm researches technologies that enable anyone to grow fresh vegetables, berries, greens and edible flowers from their homes or offices, no matter where they are located.

Air Protein: Meat substitute 

In early development, Air Protein seems like the stuff of science fiction. The California-based startup’s mission is to “feed the planet’s growing population with an ultra sustainable solution: air-based meat.” This is done much in the same way as brewing beer or making yogurt, by using the “probiotic production process” to combine the air elements (like carbon dioxide, oxygen and nitrogen) with water and mineral nutrients to make a nutrient-rich protein. It will likely be a few years before we see a physical product on supermarket shelves, however.

Kitche: Food waste app

In an effort to reduce food waste, Kitche’s app is designed to be both cost saving and sustainable. Alongside many aspects of the app, the London-based Kitche will scan food products from all major supermarket receipts, keep track of food you’ve got at home, and most importantly, help you match your leftover carrots and tomatoes with thousands of recipes so you avoid throwing anything away. British firm QVentures has invested six figures into the free app early this year, in the hope that it will help tackle the ongoing issue of food waste.


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