Victorian food and agtech incubator program Rocket Seeder has partnered with MLA Donor Company (MDC), a subsidiary of Meat & Livestock Australia, to explore opportunities for innovation with red meat.
With MDC working to explore opportunities across the value chain for the red meat and livestock industry by attracting co-investment for innovation projects, the organisations will work together to offer participants one-day design sprint workshops, a design challenge, and a 14 week accelerator program.
Kicking off with the workshops, which will run in Ballarat, Warragul, and Melbourne, the activities will focus on four key opportunities identified for the industry: personalised nutrition, snacking on the go, healthy ageing, and sustainable food consumption and packaging.
Michael Lee, manager of MDC’s High Value Food Frontiers program, said changing consumer trends and lifestyles represent “new high value growth opportunities” for the Australian red meat industry.
“With the global demand for protein increasing, and red meat playing a key role in the Australian diet, the opportunity for novel, meat-based food products to capture a share of the market is strong,” he said.
“This collaboration with Rocket Seeder broadens our existing network of agtech, foodtech and food innovation partners and will further help attract new entrepreneurs and startups to create commercially viable solutions that will underpin a long-term sustainable competitive position for our industry.”
Jeffrey Bourne, managing director of Rocket Seeder, said the program has been designed specifically for the red meat industry.
“Rocket Seeder’s experience helping food entrepreneurs bring new products and services to market quickly, combined with MDC’s intimate knowledge of the red meat industry, means we have been able to tailor the program to maximise the benefits for the sector,” he said.
Rocket Seeder launched last year in partnership with Monash University’s Monash Food Incubator, looking to work with entrepreneurs and startups addressing an aspect of the agtech and food value chain, from production to consumption.
This value chain covers the likes of those working with land, seed, fertiliser, stock and feed to those in production, processing, packaging, warehousing and distribution, wholesale and retail, or preparation and consumption.
Among the graduates from Rocket Seeder’s first cohort is Feastively,a meal kit delivery service promising consumers that they can cook their own healthy dinner in 15 minutes, in just one pan.
Just like competitors HelloFresh and Marley Spoon, Feastively still has customers head online to check out the menu, which changes each week, to order their meal kits for the week, but upon delivery they will find that Feastively’s chefs have done all the chopping of ingredients and pre-cooking for them.
Also working with Monash University through its Food Innovation Centre is global yogurt company Chobani, which recently unveiled the first cohort of its incubator program. The incubator, the company said, was created to “take on the big guys” while making delicious, nutritious, natural and accessible food, a philosophy known throughout Chobani as its ‘DNNA’.
Image: Jeffrey Bourne. Source: Supplied.