Triumphant start-ups tackle milk quality and food waste

FoodBytes! NYC: Big winners from the Big Apple

Who brought the future of food to New York? FoodBytes! judges rewarded three standout start-ups for their cutting-edge products and technologies aimed at reducing food waste throughout the supply chain and producing better quality milk.

Last week in Manhattan, nineteen start-ups took the stage to pitch business ideas in foodtech, agtech and consumer packaged goods. Nine companies had 3.5 minutes to pitch their concepts to industry leaders and investors; ten had 1.5 minutes. Three emerged victorious.

Read further to meet the three start-ups who took home the coveted FoodBytes! trophies.

Judges’ Choice Award

SomaDetect’s winning pitch at FoodBytes! New York

Judges selected SomaDetect based on product innovation, market traction, team experience and sustainability. The deep learning AI dairy company’s technology provides real-time, automated analysis of milk quality without any addition of chemicals or consumables. Judges applauded the start-up not only for its technology, but for its farmer-first approach and focus on quality.

Bethany Deshpande, CEO: “We measure every compound in raw milk and provide our dairy farmers with the information they need to make the best possible milk. As cows are milked, we make measurements in real time. Information is sent to the cloud and is accessible to farmers on their phone or their computer when they need it. SomaDetect is designed to fit into existing to dairy equipment and provides automated measurements for every cow at every milking.”

People’s Choice Award

Winnow’s winning pitch at FoodBytes! New York

Voted on by the audience and Facebook Live viewers, Winnow won the People’s Choice Award. With technology that allows real-time data monitoring on discarded food in commercial kitchens, Winnow aims to help businesses increase profitability while dramatically reducing food waste.

David Jackson, Head of Marketing: “In the hospitality sector, food waste is a $100 billion problem. On average, commercial kitchen food waste costs $30,000 per year. We help chefs run profitable and sustainable kitchens by developing digital tools to cut food waste in half. Today we get to choose the future of our food service system. We invite you one kitchen at a time, one service at a time, one food at a time to come together and show food is too valuable to waste.”

Read our profile of Winnow in our “Six food waste apps to watch” series.

Highly Commended Award

Wasteless’ winning pitch at FoodBytes! New York

From the 1.5-minute pitches, the judges awarded Wasteless, a dynamic pricing system that allows supermarkets to price and sell products based on expiration dates, the Highly Commended Award. Wasteless aims to prove that an innovative, intelligent and data-driven approach is needed to disrupt the food chain and reduce food waste.

David Kat, Global SVP, Business Development: “Combatting food waste is the highest impact we can make against climate change. We come from a strong tech background and have looked at dynamic pricing to drive up revenues. We look at expiration dates and give products an optimal price point. We discovered dynamic pricing can also stop food waste.”

Check out our podcast with Wasteless’ David Kat here.

FoodBytes! is a Rabobank initiative connecting agrifood start-ups with industry leaders and investors. Applications are open now for FoodBytes! San Francisco on March 27, 2019! Learn more.