Irish agrifood and technology funder Yield Lab has announced almost €50m for its sustainable agrifood tech venture capital fund. This will be available to companies who have developed new technologies that improve the environmental and carbon footprint of the food and agriculture industry.
The fund will invest in seed-to Series A-stage companies in Ireland and Europe, with the addition of new investors including the European Investment Fund through the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), Invest-NL, Allied Irish Banks plc and new family office investors.
Yield Lab is also expected to expand into the Netherlands, opening a Dutch office as part of a new partnership with StartLife.
StartLife is the agrifood tech hub and accelerator for Wageningen University and Research, a globally recognised leader in agrifood tech innovation and sustainability.
So far, the Irish fund has completed seven investments to-date, including Irish start-ups ApisProtect (protecting honey bees and biodiversity), MicroGen Biotech (soil health), Micron Agritech (livestock parasite testing) and Equimetrics (animal health monitoring).
European start-ups include N2 Applied (biogenic methane reduction/decarbonisation of livestock), Kaffe Bueno (coffee upcycling) and RootWave (sustainable weed control).
The fund is also part of Yield Lab global, with sister funds in the US, Latin America and Asia Pacific. This provides start-ups with access to a global network, to enable them to scale and commercialise internationally.
Commenting on the close, chairman Paul Finnerty said: “We believe that zero-carbon agriculture and food production is a tremendous opportunity and can be achieved by 2040.”
He continued: “We have invested and will continue to invest in technologies to enable this transition. We look forward to investing in the innovation that positions Irish agriculture as being properly viewed as part of the climate solution, and not the problem.”
Managing partners Nicky Deasy and David Bowles added: “We are open for business, so please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are raising capital.”