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💸 7 Stocks & investments opportunities in the AgriTech industry worth looking at in The Adaptive Economy.
Ventures adapting the agriculture/food disruption field & their investment opportunities for the decade ahead.
The fact is, we will have to feed 9 billion people by 2050. This means we gonna have to improve the way produce and distribute a lot more food. To successfully feed everyone, we would therefore need to increase global food production by 70% by 2050, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) . Read The Adaptive Economy full Essay on the emerging trillion-dollar AgriTech adaptive economy.
9.8 billion mouths to feed
Five years ago, almost no one knew what Agritech was. Inside the industry, we didn’t even know what to call what we were doing. But fast forward to today, and agricultural technology – from vertical farming to data science to farm drones – is the new hot thing in investor circles. The Investment Corporation of Dubai alone just dropped $203 million into Agritech investments; another $200 million came from the Japanese holding behemoth SoftBank; and dedicated VC funds are zeroing in on the sector’s potential. In 2017, total investment was over $1.5 billion – a new record for the sector, and one that’s setting the stage for explosive growth.
Yuval Noah Harari, historian and author of Sapiens, A Brief History of Mankind, describes the first agricultural revolution as "the greatest scam in history." We do not hide from you that after starting a post on agriculture, stumbling upon this kind of quote can be slightly disheartening. But in fact, after reading - literally - tons of things, we realized we were there:
Agriculture has been one of the great turning points in the history of mankind, no doubt about it. It was with her that we went from one nomadic lifestyle to another, a sedentary one. Technical advances have made it possible to dramatically increase the amount of what we produce. But today, it is impossible to exploit the land more than we already do. In 2020, Humanity is struggling to resolve its structural production problems. And scandals like the recent glyphosate scandals are just a wake-up call: we are at the end of a model. It is time to change our methods of agricultural production. We all need to eat, and our population is rapidly growing. In this respect, booming investor interest in Agritech should hardly come as a surprise. Market potential is nearly limitless precisely because our appetites are too.
Agriculture & climate change
UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed stated that 2018 was a record-breaking year for climate, but 2019 doesn’t look much better. As the list of extreme weather events and climate shocks grows, so does our shared responsibility to act.
For the agricultural sector, these weather events are particularly devastating, with increased cycles of more frequent floods and drought hitting many farmers. The good news is that, two years ago in Bonn, the world’s governments finally acknowledged for the first time that agriculture has a major role to play in our changing climate. Following a series of intense all-night discussions and years of division and deadlock, governments at COP23 finally agreed on the connection between industrialized farming and our warming climate.
The world’s leading climate scientists have concluded that how we farm and use our land (whether for food production, forestry, or other types of land use) is responsible for about one-quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. If we include emissions caused by the processing, transport, storage, cooling and disposal of the food that we consume, then that figure rises to more than 40% – an unthinkable price for how we farm and eat.
The limits of the earth
People often take for granted that quality food will continue to flood in their supermarkets. In reality, the earth’s space & resources are limited, hence we will need to produce more with less…
The problem is that almost all the exploitable land is now in use. In fact, from a purely mathematical point of view, only the following geographical areas remain available: — oceans and seas — mountains and glaciers — the Arctic — Antarctica — deserts — forests.
Farmers have never been shy about embracing new technologies – the wheel, tractors and chemical compounds in fertilizers a just few that have made a world of difference through the centuries. Yet a yawning tech gap in farming has emerged in recent decades, with real-life consequences. In our approaches to land management, resource use, labour, transportation and more, we’re firmly stuck in an outdated industrial model – emphasizing large-scale farms and massive output at all costs, while ignoring externalities from environmental impact to financial repercussions and human tolls.
In recent decades, however, we have seen the beginnings of a paradigm shift: that of technology and digitization. It is impossible not to hope that thanks to this upheaval, the creation of new models of agriculture will be possible. Some are already thinking about it, developing their products and asking only to grow. Here they are:
Ventures adapting the agriculture field today:
SPOTLIGHT: The vertical farming & hydroponics opportunity - AgriCool *
FOUNDER INTERVIEW: Interview of Agricool Founder
THE ADAPTIVE ECONOMY COMPANIES WATCH LIST:
Plant-based Meat — Beyond Meat (NASDAQ: BYND) is a company that develops plant-based substitutes for meat products. In November 2020, Beyond Meat announced a collaboration with McDonald's with the development of the McPlant option, a plant-based patty and chicken substitute formulation. That same month, Beyond Meat announced the launch, in China, of a plant-based version of minced pork — Leader’s Linkedin contact
Hydroponics — Evergrow’s mission is to solve the world’s food problems one crop at a time. Using digital and mechanical controls to influence plant quality and taste while farming indoor & at scale — Leader’s Linkedin contact
Food Waste Management — TIPA is developing flexible packaging that has the same end-of-life as organic matter while maintaining the qualities of conventional plastics that consumers and brands have come to rely on. — Leader’s Linkedin contact
Drone enhanced farming — Farmbot are helping fill the farm labour gap, with drag-and-drop interfaces that allow farmers to build sequences of actions for hardware or set repeating growing regimens. — Leader’s Linkedin contact
Satellites enhanced farming — Planet Lab’s goal is to take images of the Earth’s entire surface every day to make climate change visible, accessible and actionable. Founded in 2010 by three former NASA scientists, the company visualizes daily changes across the Earth’s surface in real time. — Leader’s Linkedin contact
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