Blog

IN THE KNOW: AgTech News, March 2017

New Zealand: NEW GENETIC DISCOVERY FOUND IN BULLS

A Waikato-based company expects to make the dairy industry more sustainable by reducing nitrogen leaching on farms by 20 per cent within 20 years. CRV Ambreed has made a genetic discovery: they have bred bulls whose daughters excrete less nitrogen in their urine. Reducing the amount of nitrogen leached into water will lessen the impact the dairy industry has on the environment. Read more >>

USA: SUBURBAN FARMING WAY OF THE FUTURE
Urban farming startup BrightFarms says the smartest place to grow food for cities may be just outside them. They aim to provide a local supply of produce to big cities, without having to travel huge distances. By building glasshouses close to cities, they’re able to make use of under utilised spaces, and still produce top quality produce without the costs associated with urban living. The process gives consumers the option to shop locally and support sustainable practice. Read more >>

USA: LAB GROWN ‘CLEAN MEAT’ A SUCCESS
Memphis Meats, an American food-tech startup, has successfully created the world’s first chicken tender strip – grown entirely from self-reproducing cells. Their goal is to replace the huge numbers of livestock with animal meat that’s grown more efficiently and humanely in bioreactor tanks. The technique would help to reduce the costs associated with livestock including grain, water and waste-disposal. Read more >>

New Zealand: CALF FEEDER AN INTERNATIONAL SUCCESS
A farming invention spawned from a NZ Agricultural Fieldays competition has become an international success after generating sales in 18 countries. Designed to ease the pain of tube feeding calves, Cambridge couple Ursula and Mark Haywood created the feeder after seeing how unsuccesful current tube-feeding products are. Their feeder, designed with the calf’s anatomy in mind, have a flexible tube and easy-swallow safety tip designed to flex around a calf’s airway. Read more >>

New Zealand: NEW RESEARCH SHOWS BENEFITS OF SHEEP MILK
New Zealand has over 30,000 sheep used specifically for milking at 16 different producers, providing quality sheep milk products to the overseas market. At the 2017 Sheep Milk New Zealand Conference, research was presented that showed the benefits of consuming sheep milk products. In a study using rats, it was found that sheep milk made more solids pass through the animal’s’ system rapidly – which would mean improved gut comfort, reduced constipation and general improvement for a sluggish gut. Read more >>

Netherlands: PLANT-BASED STEAK ONE STEP CLOSER TO THE MARKET
Wageningen University researchers have created a plant-based steak, transforming vegetable protein into a layered, fibrous structure that closely resembles the appearance, and importantly, the taste of steak. Niko Koffeman, marketing and communications director at The Vegetarian Butcher, has said that plant-based alternatives to meat needs to be ‘meat-identical’ if it were to spark a food revolution. This advancement by university researchers puts the process one step closer to the market. Read more >>

New Zealand: AGRIBUSINESS INVESTMENT SHOWCASES SEES TALENT ACROSS ALL FIELDS
Honey tracking software, nitrate-reducing treatment and remote pest control monitoring are among the 12 startups on show at this year’s New Zealand Agribusiness Investment Showcase. Besides financial capital, the startups are also looking for the benefits capital can bring; access to global supply chains, export markets and a wealth of knowledge. With an investor audience, there was plenty of potential for the startups to make industry contacts and help get their products on the market. Read more >>