My crystal ball tells me that come early 2020, we’ll get numerous announcements from startup accelerators and incubators opening the application process for their programs. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to wait another several months if you’re ready to start shopping your startup to a program right now. With that in mind, here’s a quick roundup of some remaining food tech accelerator programs still taking applications in 2019.
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Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) Accelerator Program
Kansas City, MO
The DFA, a national cooperative of family farmers in the U.S., is starting to recruit startups for the 2020 class of its accelerator program, which focuses on both dairy innovation and agri-tech areas like data management, herd health management, supply chain, food traceability, and more.
Successful applicants will take part in a 90-day cohort that is a combination of virtual programming and about four weeks of onsite work at the DFA headquarters in Kansas City, MO. Participants get guidance on product development and marketing, as well as access to DFA executives and potential investors. The DFA is specifically looks for companies it can strike longer-term relationships with.
Applications are taken on a rolling basis, while the next program starts on March 30, 2020.
Powered by Deloitte and based in Milan, Italy, the FoodTech Accelerator picks 10 startups each year to participate in its 15-week program. The program covers a pretty wide range of areas in the food industry, from CPG to agri-tech to automation and packaging innovation. Notable alumni include Inspecto and Wasteless.
Selected participants will work with mentors to validate their products and scale their business. Companies also get access to cash contribution and services (in exchange for up to 6 percent equity), potential investors, workspace in Milan and an introduction to the European food tech ecosystem. The program ends with a demo day where companies pitch to investors.
Applications close on September 30, 2019.
The Thrive Accelerator, run by Silicon Valley-based SVG Partners, is a four-month program geared towards pre-Series A startups working in a range of agritech areas, including supply chain management, animal health, biotech, robotics, indoor farming, and farm software, to name a few. Thrive selects 10 companies to participate in the program, which is part virtual and part onsite in Salinas, CA. The program ends with a demo day at the Forbes AgTech Summit in Salinas.
Thrive invests $100,000 in each startup accepted ($50,000 in cash and $50,000 in program value), with opportunity for further investment. The program also provides two mentors per company, networking opportunities, access to farmers (with whom startups can conduct field trials) and weekly webinars that cover everything from effective fundraising to go-to-market strategies.
Applications close October 31, 2019.