Rockstart looks for startups to tackle global food loss in partnership with A.P. Moller - Maersk

FoodTrack by Maersk is a new partnership between Rockstart, one of Europe’s first multi-vertical startup accelerators, and A.P. Moller - Maersk. The programme aims to cease global food loss. The applications for the first FoodTrack programme will be open from April 17 to May 13. The program itself will kick off on June 6 and finish with a Demo Day on July 6.

Today, one-third of the global food production for human consumption is lost or wasted and approximately 80 percent of the food loss occurs before it reaches stores. Rockstart together with A.P. Moller – Maersk, a global end-to-end operator in the food value chain, has taken on the mission to tackle this problem together with innovative entrepreneurs.

Rockstart has been working with the most important societal themes since 2014. Having a clear understanding of the needs of startups, it will jointly with Maersk guide the chosen teams through an intensive program that pushes the boundaries and gives entrepreneurs the advantage of validating their solutions close to the industry and leveraging the knowledge and expertise of Maersk. In addition to that, one startup from the program will receive the Rockstart Fast Track Award, which would allow it to get straight to the final selection stage of one Rockstart accelerator program.

From harvest to distribution

Together with Rockstart, Maersk will run three rounds of the month-long FoodTrack programme in 2018 and 2019. Ten startups will be chosen for each round, focussing on technologies and new business models that reduce food loss in the early stages of the value chain—from harvest to distribution. However, startups addressing all pain points of the food supply system will be considered for the programme.

Solutions of interest include logistics and supply chain technologies, sensing IoT and data monitoring, storage and packaging solutions, as well as farm and stock management systems.

“At Rockstart, we aspire to give startups the best access possible to market, capital, community, and expertise. With more and more AgriFood tech startups utilising emerging technologies and new business models to address the issue of food loss, we are delighted to support Maersk with their FoodTrack programme, and help startups drive positive change with a strong partner.”

Mark Durno, AgriFood program director at Rockstart

More than funding

The startups chosen for the first edition of the FoodTrack programme will spend a month at Maersk‘s office in Copenhagen and receive intensive support and guidance from mentors and the programme team. The programme itself consists of a series of workshops and focused mentoring sessions on problem validation, team development, competitive strategy, and pitching, conducted by mentors from both Maersk and the Rockstart network.

“As a partner and potential investor, we provide more than funds. We want to leverage our world-class infrastructure and operational expertise to help build the next business in this domain.”

Peter Votkjaer Jorgensen, Venture Partner - Growth at A.P. Moller - Maersk

When the programme is completed, the FoodTrack startups will have a chance to get follow-on funding from Maersk or engage in a partnership. The applications for the first FoodTrack programme will be open from April 17 to May 13. The program itself will kick off on June 6 and finish with a Demo Day on July 6.

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About Rockstart

Rockstart, one of Europe's first multi-vertical startup accelerators, was founded in Amsterdam in 2011 with a goal to provide startups with access to the market, capital, community, and expertise. Since then Rockstart has become the specialist in building entire ecosystems around specific domains—such as Digital Health, Smart Energy, and Artificial Intelligence. Rockstart is actively building up entrepreneurial infrastructures around the world with its acceleration verticals, as well as early-stage startup programs, Rockstart Impact and Rockstart Launchtrack. Since the inception, Rockstart has invested in more than 130 startups and supported them in their journey to raise more than €54 million and hire more than 660 people. Rockstart is an international team of 40+ professionals dedicated to support and empower startups to become scalable and change their world for the better.

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