If there is an industry for startups to change, you can be sure that technology is helping them do it. Agtech is an intriguing sphere that surrounds innovations in helping to make the food industry more efficient. But what are some of the more intriguing gains made in this sphere?
What is Agtech Doing to Change the World?
Startups in agtech, or agritech, are working to help make the food supply chain more efficient. Whether this is to help make crops travel further or to reduce wastage, it’s clear that interest in improving the supply chain is ever-growing.
This has never been clearer than through recent VC funding stats. Figures show that, up to mid-August, at least $2.6 billion had pumped into the agtech venture sphere.
More worrying stats show that food insecurity is still a genuine problem in the modern age. This refers to a lack of nutrition available, even in some parts of the developed world. For example, it’s thought that around 265 million worldwide will struggle to source food by the end of 2020.
Therefore, vital agtech movements – such as AI task delegation and pest resistance formulae – are growing immensely in popularity. There are even leading funds purely based in the sphere, such as Pontifax Agtech. This is a movement deeply concerned with the future of human hunger and malnutrition.
What Are Some Key Successes?
Of course, to understand and appreciate agtech’s rise, we need to look at recent venture successes. A great example is that of iFarm. The purpose of iFarm’s solutions is simple – to help automate produce growing and cultivation.
Crucially, labor costs and availability are helping to impact the amount of food produced year on year. iFarm’s experimentation has seen VC and Angel funding cash in up to $4 million in recent times. Specifically, automated farming, taking place entirely indoors, is viewed as a completely viable operation.
Google, too, is getting in on the agtech game. A few years ago, they led a surge in agtech interest by casting $15 million into the Farmers Business Network. FBN is one of several innovators developing sensors and tools that can help agriculture specialists grow and harvest an increasing amount of food.
Why are Agtech Startups so Important?
Increasing interest in agtech clearly shows that VCs are serious about ‘solving’ world hunger. Malnutrition across the world is, according to the World Health Organization, an ongoing global crisis. Dr Francesco Branca, on behalf of the WHO, advised that malnutrition remains the ‘main cause of death and disease across the planet.’
Therefore, it’s hardly surprising that investors are opting to try and save the world by paying into agtech. Entirely how innovations will evolve from here is for venture owners to decide. However, it’s clear that world hunger is still a problem that needs addressing.
Agtech companies and startups will likely still find support from VCs and funding sources through networking – and databases such as Fundz, where investors can find out more about company values and more besides.