The U.S. isn’t the only mentor around when it comes to startup accelerators that can help young foodtech companies grow, develop products, and head to market. And depending on a business and the products/services it produces, an overseas program can actually make more sense, as is the case with alternative meat companies and Asia, for example.
Read on for a few foodtech accelerators outside the U.S.:
Kickstart runs its accelerator program out of Zurich, Switzerland, but accepts participants from all over the world. While the range of companies it nurtures is pretty wide, encompassing everything from healthcare tech to the financial sector, it takes foodtech companies working in areas like sustainable packaging, food and nutrition personalization, and food traceability.
Participants get up to $10,000 CHF (~$9,829 USD) in business expenses covered (no equity fee), access to a mentorship network from top Swiss companies, collaboration opportunities with other companies, free office space, and access to investors.
The program runs from September 6 through November 8, 2019. Applications are open until May 17.
Like, Kickstart, Startupbootcamp caters to multiple types of companies but has a specific accelerator dedicated to food, this year taking place in Rome, Italy. The three-month-long Startupbootcamp FoodTech selects 10 companies from around the world and helps them accomplish in a few months what it claims would normally take a company over a year.
Even within the foodtech sector, Startupbootcamp takes a wide range of companies: indoor and vertical farming companies, food safety/traceability, biotech, processing, and AI are just a few areas the program caters to.
The chosen few will get access to mentors from major CPGs like Pepsi and Unilever, time with potential investors, classes and office space, and €15,000 (~$16,807 USD) in cash to cover living expenses while in Rome. Each company also gets €500,000 ($560,275 USD) in partner deals, with an opportunity to potentially earn even more. Startupbootcamp takes a 6 percent equity stake in each company.
Applications are open until June 20, 2019.
A growing number of companies and individuals believe Asia will lead the food sustainability market in the near future. With this in mind, Brinc runs two foodtech accelerators each year that nurture companies focused on tackling issues around issues like plant-based meat and dairy alternatives, health-promoting foods, insect-based proteins, and other areas of sustainable consumption.
Brinc guides participants through a five-stage system that covers the process of bringing a product to market, including prototype development, marketing and distribution, and patenting.
Those accepted to Brinc get $80,000 for a 10–15 percent equity fee for the program, a mentor network, guided curriculum, and 1:1 office hour sessions in Hong Kong. The program runs one month at minimum; extensions of that timeframe are decided on a case-by-case basis. Participants must register their business in Hong Kong.
Applications aren’t quite yet open for fall 2019, but you can sign up for updates here and get notified when that day comes.
Just Eat is a UK-based company whose food delivery network operates around the world; its venture wing follows much the same structure, with its foodtech seed program based in London but open to startups from around the globe.
Chosen companies (between three and five) relocate to London for the 12-week period and work out of the Just Eat offices with mentors, fellow startups, and other food industry founders. Just Eat invests £20k (~$22,409) in the form of a SAFE (Simple Agreement for Future Equity)
Just Eat hasn’t yet specified the start date for its next program, so visit their website to stay updated on application deadlines.