When it comes to innovation, Australian seafood businesses are making waves – globally.
Seven Australian seafood companies battled their way past fierce global competition for the opportunity to pitch to investors at a competitive Silicon Valley pitch session – the Fish 2.0 Global Innovators Forum – which took place last week.
The Fish 2.0 Global Innovators forum is a two-day event where Fish 2.0 top scorers can present their solutions to a panel of investors. The top scorers are businesses who have made it through several competitive stages during the preceding year.
Dr Patrick Hone, Managing Director of the FRDC, said participation in a global innovation event such as Fish 2.0 provides participants with great insights into how to take their ideas to the next level, along with access to focused investors.
“We hoped to connect innovators with the investment to make their ideas a reality”, said Dr Hone. “FISH2.0 opens your eyes to how the innovation and investment community is changing the way people think about oceans.
“We are now seeing the $390 billion seafood industry being an attractive proposition for investors keen to help not only feed the world, but do it in a socially responsible way and perhaps even save the planet from climate change along the way.”
The Australians pitched solutions to reduce waste in the sector, aquaculture techniques that accelerate carbon sequestration and a digital platform that connects producers with chefs.
With issues like food security, marine pollution and climate change emerging as key issues facing the world, the seafood sector is tipped to be a major new frontier for innovation, and investors are taking note.
There were 38 companies pitching to investors – 7 of these were from Australia:
· Lisa and Gregory Elliot of Australian Crayfish Hatcheries and Redclaw aquaculture in Townsville were crowned the winning Australian pitch for their presentation of their innovative Redclaw Crayfish Hatchery www.redclawhatchery.com.au
· Tom and Kath Long from TomKat Global Solutions in Townsville presented Coolpak – fully recycled and recyclable alternative to polystyrene for transporting seafood.
· Greg McLardie from Two Hands has developed a digital B2B marketplace connecting fishers with chefs.
· Andy Moulynox and Jonathan Lerner from Dreamweaver also pitched alternative packaging technology.
· Geoff Lipsett-Moore from Skadia Technologies presented technology that has the potential to reduce seabird bycatch in longline fisheries.
· Sam Harrington who works with the Climate Foundation presented deepwater aquaculture solutions that have the potential to symbiotically produce seaweed and finfish and aquaculture arrays also sequestering carbon https://www.climatefoundation.org/
· Suzanne Cattty from Aquaculture Supplements presented innovative supplements that reduces disease within farmed Atlantic Salmon.
The Fisheries Research and Development Corporation partnered with Fish2.0 in 2018, holding a number of sessions for potential entrepreneurs in Australia since October 2018. The goal has been to foster innovation and greater productivity in Australia’s fishing sector and to see innovative Australians mentored and gain broader opportunities for investment in the seafood space.
The Fish 2.0 saw seafood and marine innovators from around the world, including the U.S, Brazil, Indonesia, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, the Pacific Islands, Philippines, Russia, the United Kingdom and Australia all pitch to investors over two days at Stanford University.