ACG – Food Technology

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IMG_4305The Alliance for Corporate Growth hosted their monthly lunch at the Hilton Gallery on April 17th, 2018.   This event was focused on several local companies that specialized in advanced food technologies.  Their stories on how they are revolutionizing the food industry and paving the way for an entirely new age of healthy food was inspiring.

Some of the major challenges facing society is the level of overall illness that has been created by the current agriculture and food industries that are more focused on profits than actually on the nutrition and health of their products they are selling to consumers.  Another global challenge is the exponential population growth rates in many countries around the world.   This increase places huge food production and transportation issues for the industry.  One statistic shared stated that in the next 40 years we will have to grow 4000 times the amount of food that we have in the past just to feed the world’s population.  The talk also covered more Trends that are impacting the food industry overall.  

Mega Trends:

  • Rate of that technology is transforming the industry
  • Consumer preference to healthy foods
  • Exponential population growth
  •  The affects of climate change and potential irreversible impact to the future generations
  • Water quality and availability

Featured Speakers Included:

 

David Augustine Living Green FarmsBringing the vision of urban farming to economic reality. What traditional farms grow on 200 acres, Living Greens Farms can grow on one. With land costs and transport fuel costs skyrocketing and the demand for fresh, affordable and local food on the rise, Living Greens Farm has developed an economically viable way to grow healthy, great tasting, local, and pesticide-free leafy greens and herbs. We believe the Living Greens Farm indoor vertical farming model will challenge the entire vegetable industry to rethink how and where to grow produce. In addition to the fresh, local and healthy aspects of the Living Greens Farm model, our state-of-the-art sustainable mass food production system uses 90% less water, reduces transportation costs by 99%, reduces food waste with an extended shelf life and offers year round production without the use of pesticides.

Living Greens has made a number of key partnerships with Walmart and Lunds/Byerly’s across several midwest states.   The positions them for rapid growth with the goal of being the largest national supplier of leafy greens.

Federico Tripodi CalyxtCalyxt is a consumer-centric, food and agriculture focused company located in Minneapolis-St. Paul. It is pioneering a paradigm shift to deliver healthier food ingredients, such as healthier oils and high fiber wheat, for consumers and crop traits that benefit the environment and reduce pesticide applications, such as disease tolerance, for farmers. Calyxt develops non-transgenic crops leveraging processes that occur in nature by combining its leading gene-editing technology and technical expertise with its innovative commercial strategy.

Calyxt is positioned to be a major provider of healthy ingredients to many of today’s existing food company.   This could dramatically increase the health/nutrients in food.  They are positioning themselves as a strategic partner to these food companies as a better alternative for ingredients vs. trying to be a peer or rival food company.

The Q&A session explored questions of safety and business strategies for both companies.   As they continue to provide new solutions to the market they also disrupt traditional companies and business models.  Both speakers offered hope to the transformational potential of their solutions and moving away from a society of illness to a healthier tomorrow.

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To see more images of the event see the gallery

 

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