This Week In Food: France bans plastic, best product launches of Veganuary, Walmart was ahead of the Metaverse

This Week In Food: France bans plastic, best product launches of Veganuary, Walmart was ahead of the Metaverse

By
Nicola Spalding
January 7, 2022

This is a web version of FoodHack's 'This Week In Food' newsletter. Sign up here to receive the next edition to your inbox.


Happy new year and welcome back! Hope you’ve had a great break and looking forward to another whirlwind year in FoodTech.

I expect 2022 will be when FoodTech goes from emerging to maturing - and with that we’ll see massive success stories, juicy controversies, major IPOs, high-profile failures and more.

Through all of it, FoodHack will be right there in the thick of it to report, highlight and connect the global FoodTech industry. Plus make a few jokes along the way.

Strap in for what I believe will be most exciting year in FoodTech yet

This week in FoodTech:

  • ReMilk's mega Series B raise for alt-dairy.
  • The best product launches of Veganuary.
  • The most important M&A's of last year.
  • Leading FoodTech startups hiring right now.

The Digest

💸 Incase you missed it - here was our report and database on the most active foodtech investors of 2021. Feel free to save and add to your funding pipeline.

📈 What’s Up: It looks like the high ingredient and service prices caused by multiple challenges in 2021 are likely to carry on well into 2022. According to Sosland Publishing Co. the index with the largest gain last year was pasta, which in mid-December was up 140% year-on-year.

📉 What’s Down: Data from the New Statesman shows that one third of people intend to change their diets in 2022, of which 34% are “reducetarians”, cutting back on their meat intake.

New In Funding

 🥛 Israeli animal-free dairy startup Remilk raised $120M Series B funding and is now valued at $325M, ten times last year’s valuation. The startup replicates animal casein via microbial fermentation.

☠️ LA-based Liquid Death, which sells canned mountain water that will “murder your thirst”, closed $75M Series C funding to support its growth ambitions, starting with its new line of flavoured waters with punk-metal monikers.

♻️ Israel-headquartered TIPA raised $70M Series C funding to develop more compostable packaging options, many of which can be used to package food products.

🍄 Based in Buenos Aires, Kernel Mycofoods raised $15M in a round led by Union Group Ventures. The startup uses AI and automated production to develop its fungi-based protein solutions, and claims to have secured more than $250M in product orders.

🤖 The Live Green Co., founded in Chile in 2018, raised $7M pre-Series A funding and plans to relocate to Boston to further develop its AI-driven plant-based ingredients

🥜 German startup supernutural GmbH, which designs and builds nut grinders for retail and hospitality and provides a subscription service to supply on-demand nut butter, scored funding from FoodSparks® by PeakBridge VC.

💸 Find all 14 funding rounds of the week including SoftBank's latest FoodTech investment and new funding into South Korean cell-based meat firm DaNAgreen

Red Meat and Plastic

🇫🇷 A new law banning plastic packaging on most fruits and vegetables came into effect on New Year’s Day in France, which the country believes could cut down single-use plastics by as many as one billion pieces per year.

🥩 The Biden administration has pledged to invest $1 billion in US meat processing capacity. It’s also said that it will support private lenders that invest in independently owned food processing and distribution infrastructure like processing equipment and cold storage.

🤖 SavorEat has added a robot chef to its team in partnership with hamburger chain BBB. The ‘chef’ is capable of designing burgers according to customer nutrition specifications, 3D printed and cooked to preference.

🍄 MycoTechnology launched its consumer-facing brand, Goodside Foods, this week. Its product debut is shelf-stable meatless crumbles, made via MycoTechnology’s mushroom fermentation platform that turns mycelia into different forms of protein.

Plant Based

🌱 Veganuary (here’s how to pronounce it) is on track for its biggest year ever, and new product launches are dominating the news as businesses go after plant-based sales. Here’s our pick of the most interesting:

🧀 French dairy giant Bel Group launched a vegan version of the iconic Babybel cheese in the UK, aptly wrapped in green packaging.

🐓 KFC US is extending its partnership with Beyond Meat and launching its plant-based chicken at all its US locations (nearly 4,000!) for a limited time. The news saw Beyond Meat’s shares jump 7%. KFC UK is also bringing back its Original Recipe Vegan Burger thanks to its popularity.

🍔 Burger King UK is the first fast-food chain in the UK to launch plant-based chicken nuggets, and is aiming to make half of its menu meat-free by 2030.

🍜 British Asian-fusion restaurant chain Wagamama launched vegan Japanese-inspired fish and chips, featuring OmniFoods’ plant-based fish fillet.

🐙 Jinka debuted what it claims is the world’s first fully-prepared plant-based calamari on the retail market.

☕️ Several new plant-based menu items landed at Starbucks UK, which is also removing the surcharge on its vegan milk options.

🍦 Cold Stone Creamery is now offering its first vegan ice cream option, Silk’s dairy-free frozen dessert, at 930 locations across the US.

🧀 Aldi UK launched its first-ever plant-based cheese, a mature Cheddar made from coconut oil, under its Plant Menu brand.

🥯 Well-known cream cheese brand Philadelphia, made by Mondelēz International, launched a new plant-based version into Tesco this week.

🍕 Dominos launched its first vegan pepperoni pizza, brilliantly named PepperoNAY and topped with plant-based pepperoni from The Vegetarian Butcher, at its UK outlets.

🍦 Ben & Jerry’s introduced two new dairy-free flavours: Boom Chocolatta and Bananas Foster, marking its 20th vegan flavour.

🐟 Good Catch, owned by Gathered Foods, launched first-to-market plant-based salmon burgers via a new partnership with North American distributor UNFI.

🔔 VegTech Plant-based Innovation & Climate ETF has launched on the New York Stock Exchange, and includes 37 publicly traded companies “actively innovating with plants and plant-derived ingredients”.

Big Food & Acquisitions

🚛 Walmart plans to expand its InHome grocery delivery service, which delivers groceries directly to your refrigerator by way of a smart lock, to 30 million US households this year. The supermarket chain was also was ahead of the metaverse curve as this video from 2017 re-surfaces to show a world that could have (and in future might be) a thing.

🍻 Constellation Brands, which owns Corona beer, is launching Corona Sunbrew an "innovative" non-alcoholic beer which contains added vitamin D and only 60 calories per serving.

🚜 John Deere unveiled its first commercially available, fully autonomous tractor which it will begin shipping in the second half of the year.

🚲 Delivery Hero becomes Glovo’s major shareholder. The German delivery giant has bought an additional 39.4% stake in the Spanish on-demand delivery scaleup — on top of the 44% it already held. Proving our prediction of a year of eGrocery market consolidate is coming true.

💰Roundup of the most important food and beverage merger and acquisition deals in 2021. Spoiler alert: Coca-Cola’s acquisition of BodyArmor is the winner, with a deal worth a stonking $5.6 billion.

👋 From The Community

👀 Jobs: Find 100+ FoodTech Jobs including Vow (Australia) hiring a unique role of Food Inventor, Mirai Foods (Switzerland) recruiting several roles inc. a Research AssociateGreen Monday (UK) looking for a Social Media and Community ManagerNew Culture (USA) hiring a Senior Scientist in Fermentation, Unicorn Biotechnologies (UK) hiring several role inc. a Senior Molecular Biologist and FoodHack is looking to pay someone to make memes

🐓 FoodHack's Sam Panzer, who's also a talented home chef, recently cooked up some RIP Foods plant-based meat samples - here's his honest review. 

🌎 Last chance to apply to the 2022 FoodHack Ambassador cohort and foster the local FoodTech community in your city. Apply here before this Sunday at midnight.

👋 Proveg Incubator and FoodTech VC, Zintinus are hosting the sixth edition of their Future Food Series - this time taking a look at the world of Algae. Get your free ticket here.

😅 Bit of fun: Calories don’t count if you’re working them off at the same time, right? A list of fictional but functional snacks we’d love to see come to fruition.


How did you like today's email?

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Curated by Nicola & Arman

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This is a web version of FoodHack's 'This Week In Food' newsletter. Sign up here to receive the next edition to your inbox.


Happy new year and welcome back! Hope you’ve had a great break and looking forward to another whirlwind year in FoodTech.

I expect 2022 will be when FoodTech goes from emerging to maturing - and with that we’ll see massive success stories, juicy controversies, major IPOs, high-profile failures and more.

Through all of it, FoodHack will be right there in the thick of it to report, highlight and connect the global FoodTech industry. Plus make a few jokes along the way.

Strap in for what I believe will be most exciting year in FoodTech yet

This week in FoodTech:

  • ReMilk's mega Series B raise for alt-dairy.
  • The best product launches of Veganuary.
  • The most important M&A's of last year.
  • Leading FoodTech startups hiring right now.

The Digest

💸 Incase you missed it - here was our report and database on the most active foodtech investors of 2021. Feel free to save and add to your funding pipeline.

📈 What’s Up: It looks like the high ingredient and service prices caused by multiple challenges in 2021 are likely to carry on well into 2022. According to Sosland Publishing Co. the index with the largest gain last year was pasta, which in mid-December was up 140% year-on-year.

📉 What’s Down: Data from the New Statesman shows that one third of people intend to change their diets in 2022, of which 34% are “reducetarians”, cutting back on their meat intake.

New In Funding

 🥛 Israeli animal-free dairy startup Remilk raised $120M Series B funding and is now valued at $325M, ten times last year’s valuation. The startup replicates animal casein via microbial fermentation.

☠️ LA-based Liquid Death, which sells canned mountain water that will “murder your thirst”, closed $75M Series C funding to support its growth ambitions, starting with its new line of flavoured waters with punk-metal monikers.

♻️ Israel-headquartered TIPA raised $70M Series C funding to develop more compostable packaging options, many of which can be used to package food products.

🍄 Based in Buenos Aires, Kernel Mycofoods raised $15M in a round led by Union Group Ventures. The startup uses AI and automated production to develop its fungi-based protein solutions, and claims to have secured more than $250M in product orders.

🤖 The Live Green Co., founded in Chile in 2018, raised $7M pre-Series A funding and plans to relocate to Boston to further develop its AI-driven plant-based ingredients

🥜 German startup supernutural GmbH, which designs and builds nut grinders for retail and hospitality and provides a subscription service to supply on-demand nut butter, scored funding from FoodSparks® by PeakBridge VC.

💸 Find all 14 funding rounds of the week including SoftBank's latest FoodTech investment and new funding into South Korean cell-based meat firm DaNAgreen

Red Meat and Plastic

🇫🇷 A new law banning plastic packaging on most fruits and vegetables came into effect on New Year’s Day in France, which the country believes could cut down single-use plastics by as many as one billion pieces per year.

🥩 The Biden administration has pledged to invest $1 billion in US meat processing capacity. It’s also said that it will support private lenders that invest in independently owned food processing and distribution infrastructure like processing equipment and cold storage.

🤖 SavorEat has added a robot chef to its team in partnership with hamburger chain BBB. The ‘chef’ is capable of designing burgers according to customer nutrition specifications, 3D printed and cooked to preference.

🍄 MycoTechnology launched its consumer-facing brand, Goodside Foods, this week. Its product debut is shelf-stable meatless crumbles, made via MycoTechnology’s mushroom fermentation platform that turns mycelia into different forms of protein.

Plant Based

🌱 Veganuary (here’s how to pronounce it) is on track for its biggest year ever, and new product launches are dominating the news as businesses go after plant-based sales. Here’s our pick of the most interesting:

🧀 French dairy giant Bel Group launched a vegan version of the iconic Babybel cheese in the UK, aptly wrapped in green packaging.

🐓 KFC US is extending its partnership with Beyond Meat and launching its plant-based chicken at all its US locations (nearly 4,000!) for a limited time. The news saw Beyond Meat’s shares jump 7%. KFC UK is also bringing back its Original Recipe Vegan Burger thanks to its popularity.

🍔 Burger King UK is the first fast-food chain in the UK to launch plant-based chicken nuggets, and is aiming to make half of its menu meat-free by 2030.

🍜 British Asian-fusion restaurant chain Wagamama launched vegan Japanese-inspired fish and chips, featuring OmniFoods’ plant-based fish fillet.

🐙 Jinka debuted what it claims is the world’s first fully-prepared plant-based calamari on the retail market.

☕️ Several new plant-based menu items landed at Starbucks UK, which is also removing the surcharge on its vegan milk options.

🍦 Cold Stone Creamery is now offering its first vegan ice cream option, Silk’s dairy-free frozen dessert, at 930 locations across the US.

🧀 Aldi UK launched its first-ever plant-based cheese, a mature Cheddar made from coconut oil, under its Plant Menu brand.

🥯 Well-known cream cheese brand Philadelphia, made by Mondelēz International, launched a new plant-based version into Tesco this week.

🍕 Dominos launched its first vegan pepperoni pizza, brilliantly named PepperoNAY and topped with plant-based pepperoni from The Vegetarian Butcher, at its UK outlets.

🍦 Ben & Jerry’s introduced two new dairy-free flavours: Boom Chocolatta and Bananas Foster, marking its 20th vegan flavour.

🐟 Good Catch, owned by Gathered Foods, launched first-to-market plant-based salmon burgers via a new partnership with North American distributor UNFI.

🔔 VegTech Plant-based Innovation & Climate ETF has launched on the New York Stock Exchange, and includes 37 publicly traded companies “actively innovating with plants and plant-derived ingredients”.

Big Food & Acquisitions

🚛 Walmart plans to expand its InHome grocery delivery service, which delivers groceries directly to your refrigerator by way of a smart lock, to 30 million US households this year. The supermarket chain was also was ahead of the metaverse curve as this video from 2017 re-surfaces to show a world that could have (and in future might be) a thing.

🍻 Constellation Brands, which owns Corona beer, is launching Corona Sunbrew an "innovative" non-alcoholic beer which contains added vitamin D and only 60 calories per serving.

🚜 John Deere unveiled its first commercially available, fully autonomous tractor which it will begin shipping in the second half of the year.

🚲 Delivery Hero becomes Glovo’s major shareholder. The German delivery giant has bought an additional 39.4% stake in the Spanish on-demand delivery scaleup — on top of the 44% it already held. Proving our prediction of a year of eGrocery market consolidate is coming true.

💰Roundup of the most important food and beverage merger and acquisition deals in 2021. Spoiler alert: Coca-Cola’s acquisition of BodyArmor is the winner, with a deal worth a stonking $5.6 billion.

👋 From The Community

👀 Jobs: Find 100+ FoodTech Jobs including Vow (Australia) hiring a unique role of Food Inventor, Mirai Foods (Switzerland) recruiting several roles inc. a Research AssociateGreen Monday (UK) looking for a Social Media and Community ManagerNew Culture (USA) hiring a Senior Scientist in Fermentation, Unicorn Biotechnologies (UK) hiring several role inc. a Senior Molecular Biologist and FoodHack is looking to pay someone to make memes

🐓 FoodHack's Sam Panzer, who's also a talented home chef, recently cooked up some RIP Foods plant-based meat samples - here's his honest review. 

🌎 Last chance to apply to the 2022 FoodHack Ambassador cohort and foster the local FoodTech community in your city. Apply here before this Sunday at midnight.

👋 Proveg Incubator and FoodTech VC, Zintinus are hosting the sixth edition of their Future Food Series - this time taking a look at the world of Algae. Get your free ticket here.

😅 Bit of fun: Calories don’t count if you’re working them off at the same time, right? A list of fictional but functional snacks we’d love to see come to fruition.


How did you like today's email?

Love it 😁 Meh 😐 Hate it 🙁

Curated by Nicola & Arman

This is a web version of FoodHack's 'This Week In Food' newsletter. Sign up here to receive the next edition to your inbox.


Happy new year and welcome back! Hope you’ve had a great break and looking forward to another whirlwind year in FoodTech.

I expect 2022 will be when FoodTech goes from emerging to maturing - and with that we’ll see massive success stories, juicy controversies, major IPOs, high-profile failures and more.

Through all of it, FoodHack will be right there in the thick of it to report, highlight and connect the global FoodTech industry. Plus make a few jokes along the way.

Strap in for what I believe will be most exciting year in FoodTech yet

This week in FoodTech:

  • ReMilk's mega Series B raise for alt-dairy.
  • The best product launches of Veganuary.
  • The most important M&A's of last year.
  • Leading FoodTech startups hiring right now.

The Digest

💸 Incase you missed it - here was our report and database on the most active foodtech investors of 2021. Feel free to save and add to your funding pipeline.

📈 What’s Up: It looks like the high ingredient and service prices caused by multiple challenges in 2021 are likely to carry on well into 2022. According to Sosland Publishing Co. the index with the largest gain last year was pasta, which in mid-December was up 140% year-on-year.

📉 What’s Down: Data from the New Statesman shows that one third of people intend to change their diets in 2022, of which 34% are “reducetarians”, cutting back on their meat intake.

New In Funding

 🥛 Israeli animal-free dairy startup Remilk raised $120M Series B funding and is now valued at $325M, ten times last year’s valuation. The startup replicates animal casein via microbial fermentation.

☠️ LA-based Liquid Death, which sells canned mountain water that will “murder your thirst”, closed $75M Series C funding to support its growth ambitions, starting with its new line of flavoured waters with punk-metal monikers.

♻️ Israel-headquartered TIPA raised $70M Series C funding to develop more compostable packaging options, many of which can be used to package food products.

🍄 Based in Buenos Aires, Kernel Mycofoods raised $15M in a round led by Union Group Ventures. The startup uses AI and automated production to develop its fungi-based protein solutions, and claims to have secured more than $250M in product orders.

🤖 The Live Green Co., founded in Chile in 2018, raised $7M pre-Series A funding and plans to relocate to Boston to further develop its AI-driven plant-based ingredients

🥜 German startup supernutural GmbH, which designs and builds nut grinders for retail and hospitality and provides a subscription service to supply on-demand nut butter, scored funding from FoodSparks® by PeakBridge VC.

💸 Find all 14 funding rounds of the week including SoftBank's latest FoodTech investment and new funding into South Korean cell-based meat firm DaNAgreen

Red Meat and Plastic

🇫🇷 A new law banning plastic packaging on most fruits and vegetables came into effect on New Year’s Day in France, which the country believes could cut down single-use plastics by as many as one billion pieces per year.

🥩 The Biden administration has pledged to invest $1 billion in US meat processing capacity. It’s also said that it will support private lenders that invest in independently owned food processing and distribution infrastructure like processing equipment and cold storage.

🤖 SavorEat has added a robot chef to its team in partnership with hamburger chain BBB. The ‘chef’ is capable of designing burgers according to customer nutrition specifications, 3D printed and cooked to preference.

🍄 MycoTechnology launched its consumer-facing brand, Goodside Foods, this week. Its product debut is shelf-stable meatless crumbles, made via MycoTechnology’s mushroom fermentation platform that turns mycelia into different forms of protein.

Plant Based

🌱 Veganuary (here’s how to pronounce it) is on track for its biggest year ever, and new product launches are dominating the news as businesses go after plant-based sales. Here’s our pick of the most interesting:

🧀 French dairy giant Bel Group launched a vegan version of the iconic Babybel cheese in the UK, aptly wrapped in green packaging.

🐓 KFC US is extending its partnership with Beyond Meat and launching its plant-based chicken at all its US locations (nearly 4,000!) for a limited time. The news saw Beyond Meat’s shares jump 7%. KFC UK is also bringing back its Original Recipe Vegan Burger thanks to its popularity.

🍔 Burger King UK is the first fast-food chain in the UK to launch plant-based chicken nuggets, and is aiming to make half of its menu meat-free by 2030.

🍜 British Asian-fusion restaurant chain Wagamama launched vegan Japanese-inspired fish and chips, featuring OmniFoods’ plant-based fish fillet.

🐙 Jinka debuted what it claims is the world’s first fully-prepared plant-based calamari on the retail market.

☕️ Several new plant-based menu items landed at Starbucks UK, which is also removing the surcharge on its vegan milk options.

🍦 Cold Stone Creamery is now offering its first vegan ice cream option, Silk’s dairy-free frozen dessert, at 930 locations across the US.

🧀 Aldi UK launched its first-ever plant-based cheese, a mature Cheddar made from coconut oil, under its Plant Menu brand.

🥯 Well-known cream cheese brand Philadelphia, made by Mondelēz International, launched a new plant-based version into Tesco this week.

🍕 Dominos launched its first vegan pepperoni pizza, brilliantly named PepperoNAY and topped with plant-based pepperoni from The Vegetarian Butcher, at its UK outlets.

🍦 Ben & Jerry’s introduced two new dairy-free flavours: Boom Chocolatta and Bananas Foster, marking its 20th vegan flavour.

🐟 Good Catch, owned by Gathered Foods, launched first-to-market plant-based salmon burgers via a new partnership with North American distributor UNFI.

🔔 VegTech Plant-based Innovation & Climate ETF has launched on the New York Stock Exchange, and includes 37 publicly traded companies “actively innovating with plants and plant-derived ingredients”.

Big Food & Acquisitions

🚛 Walmart plans to expand its InHome grocery delivery service, which delivers groceries directly to your refrigerator by way of a smart lock, to 30 million US households this year. The supermarket chain was also was ahead of the metaverse curve as this video from 2017 re-surfaces to show a world that could have (and in future might be) a thing.

🍻 Constellation Brands, which owns Corona beer, is launching Corona Sunbrew an "innovative" non-alcoholic beer which contains added vitamin D and only 60 calories per serving.

🚜 John Deere unveiled its first commercially available, fully autonomous tractor which it will begin shipping in the second half of the year.

🚲 Delivery Hero becomes Glovo’s major shareholder. The German delivery giant has bought an additional 39.4% stake in the Spanish on-demand delivery scaleup — on top of the 44% it already held. Proving our prediction of a year of eGrocery market consolidate is coming true.

💰Roundup of the most important food and beverage merger and acquisition deals in 2021. Spoiler alert: Coca-Cola’s acquisition of BodyArmor is the winner, with a deal worth a stonking $5.6 billion.

👋 From The Community

👀 Jobs: Find 100+ FoodTech Jobs including Vow (Australia) hiring a unique role of Food Inventor, Mirai Foods (Switzerland) recruiting several roles inc. a Research AssociateGreen Monday (UK) looking for a Social Media and Community ManagerNew Culture (USA) hiring a Senior Scientist in Fermentation, Unicorn Biotechnologies (UK) hiring several role inc. a Senior Molecular Biologist and FoodHack is looking to pay someone to make memes

🐓 FoodHack's Sam Panzer, who's also a talented home chef, recently cooked up some RIP Foods plant-based meat samples - here's his honest review. 

🌎 Last chance to apply to the 2022 FoodHack Ambassador cohort and foster the local FoodTech community in your city. Apply here before this Sunday at midnight.

👋 Proveg Incubator and FoodTech VC, Zintinus are hosting the sixth edition of their Future Food Series - this time taking a look at the world of Algae. Get your free ticket here.

😅 Bit of fun: Calories don’t count if you’re working them off at the same time, right? A list of fictional but functional snacks we’d love to see come to fruition.


How did you like today's email?

Love it 😁 Meh 😐 Hate it 🙁

Curated by Nicola & Arman

This is a web version of FoodHack's 'This Week In Food' newsletter. Sign up here to receive the next edition to your inbox.


Happy new year and welcome back! Hope you’ve had a great break and looking forward to another whirlwind year in FoodTech.

I expect 2022 will be when FoodTech goes from emerging to maturing - and with that we’ll see massive success stories, juicy controversies, major IPOs, high-profile failures and more.

Through all of it, FoodHack will be right there in the thick of it to report, highlight and connect the global FoodTech industry. Plus make a few jokes along the way.

Strap in for what I believe will be most exciting year in FoodTech yet

This week in FoodTech:

  • ReMilk's mega Series B raise for alt-dairy.
  • The best product launches of Veganuary.
  • The most important M&A's of last year.
  • Leading FoodTech startups hiring right now.

The Digest

💸 Incase you missed it - here was our report and database on the most active foodtech investors of 2021. Feel free to save and add to your funding pipeline.

📈 What’s Up: It looks like the high ingredient and service prices caused by multiple challenges in 2021 are likely to carry on well into 2022. According to Sosland Publishing Co. the index with the largest gain last year was pasta, which in mid-December was up 140% year-on-year.

📉 What’s Down: Data from the New Statesman shows that one third of people intend to change their diets in 2022, of which 34% are “reducetarians”, cutting back on their meat intake.

New In Funding

 🥛 Israeli animal-free dairy startup Remilk raised $120M Series B funding and is now valued at $325M, ten times last year’s valuation. The startup replicates animal casein via microbial fermentation.

☠️ LA-based Liquid Death, which sells canned mountain water that will “murder your thirst”, closed $75M Series C funding to support its growth ambitions, starting with its new line of flavoured waters with punk-metal monikers.

♻️ Israel-headquartered TIPA raised $70M Series C funding to develop more compostable packaging options, many of which can be used to package food products.

🍄 Based in Buenos Aires, Kernel Mycofoods raised $15M in a round led by Union Group Ventures. The startup uses AI and automated production to develop its fungi-based protein solutions, and claims to have secured more than $250M in product orders.

🤖 The Live Green Co., founded in Chile in 2018, raised $7M pre-Series A funding and plans to relocate to Boston to further develop its AI-driven plant-based ingredients

🥜 German startup supernutural GmbH, which designs and builds nut grinders for retail and hospitality and provides a subscription service to supply on-demand nut butter, scored funding from FoodSparks® by PeakBridge VC.

💸 Find all 14 funding rounds of the week including SoftBank's latest FoodTech investment and new funding into South Korean cell-based meat firm DaNAgreen

Red Meat and Plastic

🇫🇷 A new law banning plastic packaging on most fruits and vegetables came into effect on New Year’s Day in France, which the country believes could cut down single-use plastics by as many as one billion pieces per year.

🥩 The Biden administration has pledged to invest $1 billion in US meat processing capacity. It’s also said that it will support private lenders that invest in independently owned food processing and distribution infrastructure like processing equipment and cold storage.

🤖 SavorEat has added a robot chef to its team in partnership with hamburger chain BBB. The ‘chef’ is capable of designing burgers according to customer nutrition specifications, 3D printed and cooked to preference.

🍄 MycoTechnology launched its consumer-facing brand, Goodside Foods, this week. Its product debut is shelf-stable meatless crumbles, made via MycoTechnology’s mushroom fermentation platform that turns mycelia into different forms of protein.

Plant Based

🌱 Veganuary (here’s how to pronounce it) is on track for its biggest year ever, and new product launches are dominating the news as businesses go after plant-based sales. Here’s our pick of the most interesting:

🧀 French dairy giant Bel Group launched a vegan version of the iconic Babybel cheese in the UK, aptly wrapped in green packaging.

🐓 KFC US is extending its partnership with Beyond Meat and launching its plant-based chicken at all its US locations (nearly 4,000!) for a limited time. The news saw Beyond Meat’s shares jump 7%. KFC UK is also bringing back its Original Recipe Vegan Burger thanks to its popularity.

🍔 Burger King UK is the first fast-food chain in the UK to launch plant-based chicken nuggets, and is aiming to make half of its menu meat-free by 2030.

🍜 British Asian-fusion restaurant chain Wagamama launched vegan Japanese-inspired fish and chips, featuring OmniFoods’ plant-based fish fillet.

🐙 Jinka debuted what it claims is the world’s first fully-prepared plant-based calamari on the retail market.

☕️ Several new plant-based menu items landed at Starbucks UK, which is also removing the surcharge on its vegan milk options.

🍦 Cold Stone Creamery is now offering its first vegan ice cream option, Silk’s dairy-free frozen dessert, at 930 locations across the US.

🧀 Aldi UK launched its first-ever plant-based cheese, a mature Cheddar made from coconut oil, under its Plant Menu brand.

🥯 Well-known cream cheese brand Philadelphia, made by Mondelēz International, launched a new plant-based version into Tesco this week.

🍕 Dominos launched its first vegan pepperoni pizza, brilliantly named PepperoNAY and topped with plant-based pepperoni from The Vegetarian Butcher, at its UK outlets.

🍦 Ben & Jerry’s introduced two new dairy-free flavours: Boom Chocolatta and Bananas Foster, marking its 20th vegan flavour.

🐟 Good Catch, owned by Gathered Foods, launched first-to-market plant-based salmon burgers via a new partnership with North American distributor UNFI.

🔔 VegTech Plant-based Innovation & Climate ETF has launched on the New York Stock Exchange, and includes 37 publicly traded companies “actively innovating with plants and plant-derived ingredients”.

Big Food & Acquisitions

🚛 Walmart plans to expand its InHome grocery delivery service, which delivers groceries directly to your refrigerator by way of a smart lock, to 30 million US households this year. The supermarket chain was also was ahead of the metaverse curve as this video from 2017 re-surfaces to show a world that could have (and in future might be) a thing.

🍻 Constellation Brands, which owns Corona beer, is launching Corona Sunbrew an "innovative" non-alcoholic beer which contains added vitamin D and only 60 calories per serving.

🚜 John Deere unveiled its first commercially available, fully autonomous tractor which it will begin shipping in the second half of the year.

🚲 Delivery Hero becomes Glovo’s major shareholder. The German delivery giant has bought an additional 39.4% stake in the Spanish on-demand delivery scaleup — on top of the 44% it already held. Proving our prediction of a year of eGrocery market consolidate is coming true.

💰Roundup of the most important food and beverage merger and acquisition deals in 2021. Spoiler alert: Coca-Cola’s acquisition of BodyArmor is the winner, with a deal worth a stonking $5.6 billion.

👋 From The Community

👀 Jobs: Find 100+ FoodTech Jobs including Vow (Australia) hiring a unique role of Food Inventor, Mirai Foods (Switzerland) recruiting several roles inc. a Research AssociateGreen Monday (UK) looking for a Social Media and Community ManagerNew Culture (USA) hiring a Senior Scientist in Fermentation, Unicorn Biotechnologies (UK) hiring several role inc. a Senior Molecular Biologist and FoodHack is looking to pay someone to make memes

🐓 FoodHack's Sam Panzer, who's also a talented home chef, recently cooked up some RIP Foods plant-based meat samples - here's his honest review. 

🌎 Last chance to apply to the 2022 FoodHack Ambassador cohort and foster the local FoodTech community in your city. Apply here before this Sunday at midnight.

👋 Proveg Incubator and FoodTech VC, Zintinus are hosting the sixth edition of their Future Food Series - this time taking a look at the world of Algae. Get your free ticket here.

😅 Bit of fun: Calories don’t count if you’re working them off at the same time, right? A list of fictional but functional snacks we’d love to see come to fruition.


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Curated by Nicola & Arman

Weekly FoodTech Insights

Reports

Bringing home the (Alt) Bacon: the 20+ startups competing to make the best imitation rashers
FBS Alternatives: The 20+ companies racing to replace foetal bovine serum
Cracked it: the 65+ brands hatching new innovations in plant-based eggs
The Proof Is In The Pudding: The 30+ Startups Whipping Up Plant-Based Desserts
Period power: The 30+ startups supporting feminine wellness with food
Make way for the herd: the 18 European FoodTech ‘Soonicorns’ to watch
The spice of life: 20+ seasoning startups taking on the Big Spice Industry
Crop Genetics: the 15 companies working on genetically edited crops that could transform farming and food