The 5th edition of the Tesco Agri T-Jam start-up pitch competition, held in partnership with the World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit, this year welcomed over 140 submissions from international innovators eager to improve supply chain efficiency and sustainability within Tesco’s agri-food operations.

After a thorough selection process, ten disruptive start-ups – Altered Carbon, BigSIS, iFlowTech, Earth Rover, Farm Health Guardian, Flox, Frasscoat, Enifer Bio, Pherosyn and Soos Technology – will go head-to-head for a chance to work with the UK’s leading retailer and supply chain partners. The competition final will take place on Monday September 19, one day before the World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit opens in London.

Commenting on the selection process, Natalie Smith, Tesco’s Head of Agriculture said: “The calibre of entries has been fantastic, it was a challenging task for our committee to select just ten finalists. In such a critical year to address climate change challenges, together with our partners we’re excited to hear more from our finalists on how they can truly make a difference in the supply chain, helping us deliver affordable, sustainable and healthy food for all our customers.”

Meet the finalists with breakthrough technologies, from autonomous weeding robots and bioresin seed coatings, to mycoprotein aquaculture feed and biosecurity software:

Altered Carbon’s (UK) multi-array low-power sensor can detect complex cocktails of scent, which can be used to monitor shelf- life and prevent food waste across the value chain.

BigSIS (UK) offers cost-effective sustainable insect control solutions that can be combined with established commercial practices in integrated pest management.

Earth Rover’s (UK) autonomous ultra-lightweight weeding rover collects crop data in real time, offering a herbicide-free, low energy and eye-safe weeding solution.

Enifer Bio (Finland) is developing a mycoprotein feed for aquaculture made from renewable raw materials as a sustainable high-protein alternative to soy protein concentrate.

iFlow Tech (Thailand) has developed a net zero, chemical-free and energy independent Halbach array magnetiser that helps plant growth with magnetised nutrient solution.

Farm Health Guardian (Canada) is a biosecurity software platform that reduces the risk of disease transfer by digitally recording movement of people and vehicles around a farm property.

Flox (UK) is using a combination of hardware and advanced AI and analytics to bring better welfare, productivity and sustainability to the broiler chicken supply chain.

Frasscoat (UK) upcycles insect waste with a patented bio-resin to apply protective seed coatings that enhance germination and has bio-promotor effects.

Pherosyn (UK) is scaling-up the production of new insect pheromones for a sustainable and integrated pest management system.

Soos Technology’s (Israel) non-invasive pre-incubation system turns genetic male chicken embryos into functional female layers, increasing production and removing the need for male chick culling.

The final will take place in an by-invitation pitch day on September 20. The ten finalists will each present their solutions in a five-minute pitch to the judging committee, Tesco supply chain partners, and VIP investors. Last year’s Agri T-Jam winner Crop Intellect will update on its progress, before the 2022 winner is revealed.

The chosen start-up will enjoy vital mentorship and support from the Tesco Agri team, with introductions to key supply chain partners. They will also pitch their solution live onstage at the World Agri-Tech Innovation Summit in London on September 20-21, to the senior-level audience of international agri-food industry leaders and investors.

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