Tyson Foods produces a massive one out of five pounds of protein consumed in the United States. Barilla isn’t any slouch either, with its 30% dry pasta market share in the US and 10% worldwide.
That’s a whole lotta chicken and pasta, so when execs for the investment arms of these two food giants took the stage last month at Smart Kitchen Summit Europe, you can bet all were listening intently to see what they had to say about the future of food and cooking.
The panel featured Thomas Mastrobuoni, CFO of Tyson Ventures, and Michela Petronio, Director at Barilla’s investment arm, Blu1877, who took the stage to discuss food tech and connected kitchen investment in our closing panel which was moderated by Beatriz Romanos of TechFood Magazine.
The three had lots to say about technology, the food business and how they are investing in the future as these two worlds increasingly intersect.
Mastrobouni talked about one of their recent investments and how it’s a sign that technology is having the same disruptive impact on food now it had on media and finance over the past decade.
“We’ve said innovation, that boat has sailed, and we’re on to disruption now,” said Mastrobuoni. “The startups that we’re focusing on are, in some ways, out to get us. For the largest protein company in the US to invest in a plant based protein and two cultured meat investments… for us to go out and do that sends a message that the technology is starting to hit the food industry.”
There are lots of other great insights in the video, including discussion of why companies like Barilla and Tyson decided to launch their own investment arms, why they are interested in the connected kitchen and many more, so you’ll want to make sure to watch the entire session below:
If you want to hear more from VC’s and investors in the connected cooking space, join us at the Smart Kitchen Summit in Seattle this October!