Cerescon and Seamore are the winners of the Dutch Finals of the European FoodNexus Startup Challenge (FNSC). Today they received prize money of €10,000 each and a spot in the European Finals on December 13th in Wageningen.
Cerescon and Seamore top the list of 53 Dutch startups that participated in the preliminary round in The Netherlands. In today’s Dutch Finals, ten nominees pitched their ideas to the jury which comprised of experts from SHIFT Invest, DSM Venturing, FrieslandCampina, Albert Heijn and Nutreco. Jury members assessed the startups’ team, scalability, and impact on our food system.
On December 13, Wageningen will host the European Finals of the challenge. Cerescon and Seamore will compete for the grand prize of €50,000 along with the finalists from Denmark, Spain, Italy, Ireland, France and Belgium. This event promises to be an even greater demonstration of breakthrough startups contributing to a better food system. Register for the newsletter via www.fnsc.eu to stay updated on the European Finals and the next edition of the challenge.
A key component of the challenge is to foster the collaboration between the innovative startups and the corporates that have the execution power to help the startups develop and scale their product or service. ‘That’s the very essence of the European FoodNexus Startup Challenge’, says Rob Hamer, President FoodNexus. ‘We like to be surprised by entrepreneurs who want to bring their ideas to life and FNSC is an excellent platform to connect startups to a large dynamic European network of companies and research organisations.’
Cerescon developed the first asparagus harvesting robot in the world. With this robot, farmers have less subsurface damage and higher yield. The “white gold” goes back to the farmers. Seamore is commercializing a range of unique seaweed-based food products. The pasta of Seamore is already in the supermarket, and the tortilla’s will follow soon.
‘We are very excited to be the winners of this prestigious Dutch Finals, says Thérèse van Vinken from Cerescon. ‘The jury was very high-level and critical, so this is a great endorsement of our work so far’.
Bertholt Leeftink, Director-General Enterprise and Innovation at the Ministry of Economic Affairs stressed the importance of new business for innovation in the food system. The Dutch Ministry of Economic affairs is glad to partner with this challenge as part of its overall ambition to increase the number of successful food & agtech startups in The Netherlands."
‘We’ve really seen high-quality startups emerge from across The Netherlands today and we know many more have applied. This shows that there’s plenty in store for the next edition of FNSC’ says, Thomas van den Boezem, programme manager at Startlife. Applications for the 2018 edition of FNSC will open in spring 2018.