The World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit and Radicle Growth, a San Diego-based acceleration fund, have teamed up for second the Radicle Challenge. It will pit eight of the world’s most promising agtech startups against each other during the summit in San Francisco on 18 March, with the winner walking away with $250k of funding.
Runners and riders
Agrospheres (US) has developed a platform technology for encapsulation of biomolecules and synthetic chemicals. It is developing biological-based crop protection products for the control of thrips and fungi, also working with partners to improve the delivery and efficacy of pesticides and the delivery of double-stranded RNA.
AgTrace (Brazil) is a traceability solution that ensures transparency and information reliability, reducing response time to issues within the food value chain. Based on deep knowledge of farming processes and advanced IoT and blockchain technologies, AgTrace guarantees information security about agriculture processes, using sensors and equipment to register information from inside and outside the farm.
Aromyx (US) enables the creation of quantitative digital representations of taste and smell, by isolating natural human olfactory receptors and converting them to a standardized diagnostic format. Its olfactory database provides a basis for machine learning to analyze flavors and fragrances, offering revolutionary precise quality control diagnostics to compare crops from different locations or production times, and to resolve issues of off-flavors or contaminant.
EscaVox (Australia) has the ambition to help transform the food supply chains to allow better decisions to be made, allowing waste to be reduced and food safety increased. It uses cleverly designed software to import and connect various data sets, then analyses and identifies problem areas. It combines this with tracking data to give the full end to end impact on the product – the ‘voice’ of the product.
Napigen (US) offers mitochondrial CRISPR genome editing, with the goal to create a new platform for hybrid wheat seed production by providing elite male sterile and restoration lines that are uniquely produced by our genome editing tools, introducing robust, non-GMO, male sterile and restoration lines. The hybrid wheat platform will stack valuable traits such as herbicide tolerance and biotic/abiotic stress tolerance without losing their value by undesirable self-propagation.
Tarfin (Turkey) provides farmers with instant, competitive point-of-sale credit terms for their farm inputs purchases. Using proprietary algorithms and an expansive retail network, Tarfin’s machine-learning-based credit algorithms instantly assess a farmer’s likelihood of repayment. Transactional as well as farm level data are taken into account, helping the company convert more leads into sales.
Traive (US) is an ag-fintech solution that unlocks credit to farmers by connecting them to lenders and providing ML-based credit risk assessment and monitoring. Traive brings farmers state-of-the-art technology to offer a novel and fair credit risk assessment, opening the door for affordable funding for their businesses. For lenders, Traive provides a differentiated analysis applied over alternative farming and individual data, while allowing access to a much larger and diversified portfolio of borrowers.
Tulaa (Kenya) is a marketplace for smallholder farmers in Africa to access inputs, credit, training and buyers. Using mobile technology and artificial intelligence, Tulaa enables farmers to buy inputs like fertilizer on credit, receive training on good agricultural practices, and to find buyers at harvest time.