Circular Economy

Food waste technology wins $20,000 at evokeAg

Automated technology that reduces industrial food processing waste by 40 per cent was recently recognised at Australia’s largest agricultural technology event, evokeAg.

Matthew Jones, CEO of Christchurch start-up CertusBio, took home the top cash prize of $20,000 in the Investment Ready Pitch Tent competition at evokeAg in Melbourne.

Jones was one of five finalists from Australia, New Zealand and Israel who pitched their agricultural challenges, solutions and business ideas to a panel of expert venture capitalist judges.

The technology, which can be installed without interruption to existing processes, includes a bio-sensor device that provides real-time insights into when food is wasted, a dashboard giving company managers unprecedented visibility on losses, and a dedicated consultant to optimise food production.

“Two to three per cent of all processed milk disappears down the drain, which loses the dairy industry NZ$12.8 billion ($12.4 million) per year globally. The technology, which was developed by Lincoln Agritech and commercialised by CertusBio, minimises this type of waste,” Jones said.

“Our solution saves money for processors and helps them meet their social responsibility to safeguard the environment for future generations.

“Other companies have been in the market a long time, but do not provide accurate enough information to prevent this type of food waste.”

Jones is now seeking an investment of $2 million to meet the demand of customers in the international dairy industry and grow the CertusBio team.

“I’m looking for investors who care about reducing waste using validated technology in the food processing industry,” Jones concluded.