USEUROPEAFRICAASIA中文双语FrançaisHOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELWATCHTHISSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperMOBILEChinaNewsSocietyInnovationHK/Taiwan/MacaoCover StoryPhotosEnvironmentHealthMilitaryHome / China / Across AmericaChina, US can tackle global food needs
By Lia Zhu in San Francisco | China Daily USA | Updated:2017-01-25 12:00The United States and China can work together to play a big role in agricultural technology innovation to solve the worlds food issues, insiders say.A Silicon Valley-based agtech accelerator program called “Thrive” has been engaged with a Shanghai-based food-tech incubator “Bits x Bites” to identify some of the top tech companies and solutions in China and deploy the technologies in the industry.”We recognize theres innovation going on all over the world We are looking for innovation coming from China,” said Mareese Keane, program manager of Thrive, which is self-tasked with the mission of driving agtech innovation for securing the global food demands of the future.The world population is expected to reach around 9.7 billion by 2050, creating a massive demand for food – over 70 percent more food has to be produced by then, according to a report by the United Nations department of economic and social affairs.Keane said the solutions will come through technology and its “a very exciting time” now in agtech, as there is great interest and plenty of investment money available.Early stage companies accepted into the Thrive program will go through a bootcamp and receive mentorship from industry leaders to help them scale their companies, according to Keane. They will also have the opportunity of showcasing their technology during a “demo day” in June.Last year, the program attracted nearly 200 participants from 36 countries and they expect even more applications this year.Bits x Bites is part of Thrives world affiliate program. “The startups that have applied have far exceeded our expectation,” said Matilda Ho, founder of the food-tech incubator and venture capital firm.”We have met many startup teams solving issues from food waste to water quality, and food education,” she said.Ho said its critical that China is engaged in the global mission as the country holds 20 percent of the worlds population.”Chinese entrepreneurs are known for their ability to execute quickly. They are nimble and can adapt quickly to consumer feedback. Their development pace has created successful examples in areas like mobile payment and e-commerce,” Ho added.However, many startups dont have enough capital, experience or the mentoring network to help them succeed and grow rapidly as more and more of them are aware of Chinas food system challenges.For example, one-third of the food supply is wasted globally, and in many top-tier Chinese cities, between 60 and 75 percent of municipal waste comes from disposed food, said Ho. Solutions are sought to tap into waste as in a systematic, coordinated way to reduce food waste or turn it into new ingredients to create something of value, she said.”The sheer scale of the Chinese market is a no brainer,” said Ho. “But we also think that China has potential to leapfrog in certain food tech areas. Alternative proteins are an interesting example.”New forms of meatless proteins like algae, soybean, and insect sources are just finding their way to the US and Europe as the future of food.””But these ingredients have long been ingrained in the Chinese food culture, making China an exciting launching pad to develop new products that may result in broader adoption in other countries,” she said.liazhu@chinadailyusa.comPhotoPremier Li gives villagers Spring Festival giftsDitching ice skates for wheels on the hockey rinkPeople across China greet upcoming Spring FestivalIce bar opens in ShenyangMountain Spiderman collects garbage at a cliffPremier Li visits traditional Chinese medicine manufacturerLatestTaiwan reports 1.4 pct economic growth for 2016Single this Spring Festival? The good news is youre not aloneBeach city Sanya makes New York Times top destinations listHalf Chinese cities plagued by air pollutionChinas poverty relief project brings jobs to middle-aged villagersState Council NewsPremier: Wages of migrant workers should not be delayedState Council approves western development plan for 2016-2020ExclusiveAIDS, a disease that can be stoppedHigh-speed, high-tech: Alleviating travelers during Spring Festival travel rushChunyun: The largest human migration in the worldEditors picksGender roles changing as girls outperform boysEnsuring a happy new year for Chinas poorest peopleTen photos you dont wanna missTen photos from around China: Jan 13 – 19SpecialSpring Festival travel rushDiscovering FujianBACK TO THE TOPHOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELWATCHTHISSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperMOBILECopyright 1995 -var oTime = new Date();
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