50 percent of ticket sales to be donated to Hurricane Harvey relief

AUSTIN, Texas (Aug. 29, 2017) – Rabobank today announces the 20 food and agriculture startups selected to pitch at FoodBytes! Austin on Tuesday, Sept. 26 at Brazos Hall. FoodBytes! Austin will showcase solutions to pressing food challenges including livestock management tech, food by-product up-cycling, novel plant-based proteins and functional beverages. Founded as part of Rabobank’s Banking for Food (B4F) vision to build a more sustainable food system, FoodBytes! provides a safe haven for entrepreneurs to share ideas and receive the mentorship and connections they need to grow their businesses.

The FoodBytes! Austin pitch companies hail from four countries, including Australia, India, New Zealand and the United States. The ten finalist companies have 3.5 minutes to pitch a panel of expert judges and participate in an audience Q&A. Ten additional companies will give 60-second pitches to kick off the event on Sept. 26.

“FoodBytes! is a compass for the 21st century food system,” said Robyn O’Brien Founder of Do Good & AllergyKids Foundation and FoodBytes! Judge. “It attracts innovators and investors with shared values across food, tech and agriculture. To experience FoodBytes! is to understand its DNA – it is a force unlike any other.”

The ten companies giving 3.5-minute pitches are:

  • Beyond the Shoreline (New York, NY) – Creator of a new wave of seagreens-based snacks, like “Kelp Jerky”, that are packed with protein and are vegan and non-GMO and free from dairy, eggs, soy, peanuts, refined sugar and gluten.
  • Coffee Flour (Bellevue, WA) – Uses the by-product of coffee milling operations – the pulp and skin of the previously discarded coffee cherry – and turns it into a nutritionally-dense flour. Coffee Flour serves the health and sustainability needs of the food & beverage industry, while also generating significant economic, environmental and nutritional impact in coffee-growing communities.
  • GrubTubs (Austin, Texas) – Reconnecting cities to farms via its “Table-to-Farm” movement, GrubTubs collects and converts food scraps from restaurants into “grubs”, a more nutritious and cost-effective animal feed for local farmers.
  • Intello Labs (Karnataka, Bengaluru, India) – Uses Artificial Intelligence for quality evaluation of fruits, vegetables, grains and other agri crops and commodities. Users click an image of the crop, and using AI and Image recognition, they are able to measure quality parameters like crop infestation, nutrient deficiency and commodity quality.
  • Know Brainer Foods (Lafayette, CO) – Makes portion controlled ketogenic products to fuel the mind and metabolism with essential fats, not sugar, so that eaters stay alert and satiated throughout the day.
  • Native State Foods (Los Angeles, CA) – First company to introduce pinole, an ancient Aztec power food, to the U.S. through its Purely Pinole line of hot cereal and snacking products.
  • Sugarlogix (Berkeley, CA) – Maker of functional sugars that enhance the immune system, promote gut health and reduce inflammation without compromising taste.
  • Vence Corp (Key Largo, FL) – Hardware and software solution that reduces fencing and labor expenses on livestock farms and reduces the costs associated with producing pasture-raised Vence Corp offers an Invisible Fence meets Fitbit, for cows.
  • Vitox Drinking Vinegar (Los Angeles, CA) – Fermented blend of raw cold pressed juice and apple cider vinegar that delivers a 100% natural, shelf-stable and naturally probiotic health beverage.
  • XING Technologies P/L (Queensland, Australia) – Creates disruptive, rapid, point-of-care, highly cost-effective nanotechnology solutions for the agricultural and animal health industries. XING Technologies P/L screens for, diagnoses and monitors disease to improve biosecurity and deliver savings.

The ten companies giving 60-second pitches are:

  • Aspire Food Group (Austin, Texas) – Developer of the most advanced insect farming technology to produce high quality Aketta™ protein from farm-raised crickets. Aspire also makes environmentally sustainable and nutritious products under consumer brand, Aketta.
  • D’vash Organics (Los Angeles, CA) – Maker of Date Nectar, a delicious and healthy alternative sweetener and honey substitute made from organic California dates that are vegan, non-GMO, gluten free and fat-free.
  • Frshly (Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India) – First-of-its-kind automated retail marketplace that makes fresh food accessible by creating a collaborative ecosystem for food providers and consumers. Frshly offers an IoT ecosystem that connects multiple restaurant partners, host locations and consumers.
  • Greensbury Market (New York City, NY) – Sells high-quality beef, poultry and seafood online, delivered directly to customers. Everything Greensbury carries is certified organic, grass-fed, free from chemicals and humanely raised.
  • Peaceful Fruits (Peninsula, OH) – Makes healthy, delicious, rainforest-friendly fruit snacks that let consumers eat better and help build a better world.
  • Regen (Wellington, New Zealand) – Provides irrigation recommendations for farmers via a mobile app that optimizes water use, while maximizing plant growth and minimizing nitrogen leaching.
  • Ripened Ventures (Emeryville, CA) – Developing and commercializing natural and healthy fermented drinks. Ripened Ventures applies fermentation technologies to poorly diversified fruits and vegetables, using autochthonous non-GM microbes previously isolated and identified.
  • The Empanada Shop (Redondo Beach, CA) – Makes certified organic, authentic Mexican empanadas with non-GMO grass-fed meats, vegetables and chiles. The Empanada Shop aims to create a new clean Mexican food experience in the fast casual and frozen food market.
  • Think.Eat.Live. (Wildwood, MO) – Developer of a flour made from sunflower seeds that has four times more protein and fiber than other flours. Delivers nutritionally balanced baking mixes and other flour based foods that provide one-third of daily protein requirements.
  • Your Superfoods (Los Angeles, CA) – Makes it easy for people to eat natural vitamins and minerals with its seven nutritionist approved, easy-to-use and 100 percent organic superfood protein mixes for more energy, better immunity and healthier skin.

FoodBytes! Austin by Rabobank is produced in collaboration with presenting partners Food + Tech Connect, the world’s largest community for food tech and innovation, and Fresh Ideas Group, a mission-driven communications agency. FoodBytes! is supported by industry leaders including presenting sponsor Whole Foods Market, and official sponsors Holland & Hart, ADM, and The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. and its Cultivate Ventures platform.

Tickets to FoodBytes! Austin are on sale now at http://bit.ly/FBAustinTix. For more information follow FoodBytes! on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram or view curated content via the hashtag #FoodBytes. In an effort to support those affected by Hurricane Harvey in Texas, FoodBytes! will donate 50 percent of ticket sales from FoodBytes! Austin to the American Red Cross.


About Rabobank
Rabobank Group is a global financial services leader providing wholesale, rural and retail banking, leasing, and real estate services in more than 40 countries worldwide. Founded over a century ago, Rabobank today is one of the world’s largest banks with over $750 billion in assets. In North America, Rabobank is the premier bank to the food, agribusiness and beverage industries, providing sector expertise, strategic counsel and tailored financial solutions to clients across the entire food value chain. We know that sustainability and innovation are critical in promoting a thriving food and ag industry that will feed growing global populations for years to come, which is a key focus our Banking for Food strategy. Additional information is available on our website.

Media Contact
Glenda Catron | Fresh Ideas Group | glenda@freshideasgroup.com | (970) 219-0924