Hopefully, some of you will have attended Maitland’s online event on digital infrastructure yesterday – if not we’ll have some links any day now.
Next week I have another really interesting event, this time on the foodtech market. I’ll be running a live stream with Rob Appleby from Cibus, one of the leading VCs in the foodtech space. The timing of this is very convenient, especially as the national food strategy is being reported today. Many of the themes picked up in this report make sense to me, especially those aimed at changing agriculture and the food we eat. I’m not entirely sure I agree with all the recommendations, especially around taxes on salt and extending the free meals service all the way upto those earning £20,000 (wouldn’t it be better to have a proper, well-funded social security net built around a minimum income using a negative income tax ?). Regardless, this debate is now heating up.
In our event next week for Future Food Finance we’ll be talking about three topics that I think don’t get the attention they deserve:
- the opening of carbon sequestration as a business opportunity for the agricultural sector, Put simply, the right farmers will be able to make money just from cultivating the right soil. This could be an even bigger market than forestry offsets.
- replacing traditional fertilizers – with their attendant environmental spillover impacts – with next-generation products. Again, this is potentially a big game-changer
- Farm robotics. Pretty much every story I see in the press now is either about the lack of available farm workers (many from continental Europe have gone back) or the rapid aging of the UK farmer population. all of this spells one big shift – the increasing automation of farming alongside the imminent arrival of scaleable robotics. Again, this is a truly global and important shift.
The event is on at our sister website Future Food Finance and you can register (and view it) here: https://www.futurefoodfinance.com/live/shifting-agtech
We’ve also got a handy little graphic below which gives you a few more details and boasts one of my terrible photos (they all are!).