Agrifutures Australia is a research and development corporation with a mission to increase the prosperity of Australian and rural communities. The company conducts research and development programs for numerous emerging industries, and has aided in the development of the growAG platform and evokeAG event and network.
They have taken many strides throughout the last few years to invest in Australia’s agrifood system, and it appears that their diligent work is paying off.
On Tuesday, 26 October, the inaugural Asia-Pacific AgriFoodTech Investment Report 2022 was released in Singapore by venture capital firm AgFunder, partnering with AgriFuture growAG and EvokeAG. The report shows that throughout 2021, 55 deals involving Australian startups have been made and more than half a million dollars have been raised by investors, which is a positive outlook for the rest of the year.
With the development of new restaurant technologies and the emergence of plant-based protein companies, Australia has developed a reputation for being an ‘agricultural powerhouse’. The three biggest investment deals were as follows:
- Melbourne-based mobile ordering platform MrYum ($100 million)
- V2 Foods ($83 million)
- Cloud kitchen startup EatClub ($63 million)
Arianna Sipel, AgriFutures Australia senior manager is impressed with the growing maturity and diversity of the sector in Australia.
“The investment deals we’ve seen in 2021 spanned everything from eGrocery and in-store retail tech to farm management software and sensing so it shows the diversity of commercial opportunities in Australia,” said Arianna.
AgriFuture’s GrowAG and EvokeAG Platforms
AgriFuture Australia is also excited about using the growAG and evokeAG platforms to continue growing investment and collaboration in Australian agrifood tech.
GrowAG is an online database that allows users to find world leading agricultural research, technologies and commercialisation opportunities. By facilitating connections across the Australian agritech ecosystem, growAG makes it easier for startup companies to promote their commercial opportunities. This allows researchers, producers, investors and entrepreneurs to connect with one another.
Thanks to growAG, Brisbane-based farm robotics company Lyro was able to connect with Artesian Ventures. This connection eventually led to an investment deal with the VC. Since then, Lyr has been able to raise an additional $1.5M USD to deliver 20 autonomous robotic packers to its clients.
In more recent years, AgriFutures has created their AgriFutures EvokeAG event, a startup program that allows agrifood tech startups to show off their latest innovations and projects. The event will take place in Adelaide, South Australia on 21-22 February 2023. Entrepreneurs can submit applications to their Startup Alley, a platform for showcasing agrifood innovations, their Startup Showcase, an event where seven startups present their products to an audience, or their Investor Pitch Dinner, an event where entrepreneurs can present their investment-ready ideas to investors.
The Future of Agrifoodtech
The Asia-Pacific AgriFoodTech Investment Report also shows that the future for agrifoodtech is bright. Investments in Asia-Pacific agrifoodtech startups set a record in 2021 with $15.2B USD allocated towards the cause. At this rate, the positive trajectory is set to continue. The Asia-Pacific area has seen a 15% year-on-year increase in funding in the first half of 2022. Farm tech is also maturing, with funding in the region reaching $2.2B USD, double what it was in 2020. There has also been a 17.5% increase in the number of investment deals.
AgFunder founding partner and Asia-Pacific head, Michael Dean, notes that Australia has a lot of potential in regards to agrifood tech investments.
“Early on we saw the potential of the region, with its booming population growth and emerging centres of technology innovation, as a destination for agrifoodtech venture investment. We established our GROW Accelerator and Singapore-based venture impact funds to assist institutional and corporate investors in the region to access the disruptive technologies that have the potential to drive efficiencies, profitability and sustainability for decades to come,” said Michael.
The dedicated work of many companies in Australia’s growing agrifoodtech sector has paid off, and will continue to make a difference for years to come.
For more information on the latest advancement in Australia’s agricultural sector, click here!