With over 1200 people in attendance, the event initiated by research and development corporation, AgriFutures Australia, exceeded industry expectations and proved the agricultural sector has a thirst for innovation.
The conference was a combination of established businesses and start-ups positioning themselves primarily in the AgTech space. While this is not strictly the purview of the FIN, there were some interesting businesses showcasing some of the emerging trends in the food and agriculture sector.
For example, Sydney based packaging start-up, Carapac is using crustacean waste streams to make single use compostable food wrap. They take prawn, shrimp and crab shells and turn what was once useless waste into sustainable plastic alternative.
Insect protein is being billed as the next big thing in sustainable food, as long as consumers can overcome the ‘yuck’ factor and regulators can assure consumers the food is safe. Hargol FoodTech claim to be the first commercial grasshopper farm in the world, and are currently setting up a second farm in Israel. Grasshoppers are very rich in protein, over 70 per cent, and have all the amino acids a human needs. They are currently being used in the ingredients market to boost protein in the sports supplements and shakes market.
EvokeAG will run again in Melbourne in 2020.