ICL Planet Startup Hub was launched last year by leading global speciality minerals company ICL. The Hub has the aim of “cultivating, nurturing, and accelerating innovation in the AgriFood tech ecosystem”. This includes developing innovative clean label proteins — the Hub has already invested in alt-protein startups Protera and Plantible.
By working with ICL Planet Startup Hub, startups gain access to markets, expertise, scientists, and sample testing. They can also receive agronomic or food application feedback.
“To boost innovation, StartLife actively connects startups to leading players in the industry. ICL’s core domain is complementary to our partner community value chain coverage. In our talks, we quickly discovered we have a lot of synergies in our activities and the same drive for sustainability in food and agriculture,” said StartLife’s Operations Director, Laura Thissen.
Startlife supports early-stage food and agricultural startups with pre-seed funding, intensive coaching, and access to a network of partners and investors. In 2018, the accelerator told vegconomist that it was supporting several plant-based companies making products such as seaweed-based pasta products, plant-based meat alternatives, and vegetable wraps. More recently, Startlife has supported Sophie’s Bionutrients, a company making alt-protein products from microalgae.
“ICL Planet Startup Hub seeks to establish a new generation of plant nutrition solutions, and our aim is to invest in startups, which can make a meaningful difference,” said Hadar Sutovsky, vice president of External Innovation at ICL Group. “StartLife has a strong track record of spotting and attracting promising early-stage startups globally, and its position at the heart of the European AgriFood tech ecosystem, its focus on sustainable food systems, and its strong links with the world-renowned Wageningen University & Research were central to our decision to enter into a partnership.”