Meals in bottles and burgers from laboratories - the hunger for the next generation of food has gained momentum. Early-stage investment in agrifood tech start-ups recorded a double-digit increase and the industry is said to be worth USD 8 trillion soon. We have included an insight into this potentially huge market. Enjoy the read and have a relaxing weekend.




Friday, 02 November 2018





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Meals in bottles and burgers from laboratories - the hunger for the next generation of food has gained momentum. Early-stage investment in agrifood tech start-ups recorded a double-digit increase and the industry is said to be worth USD 8 trillion soon. We have included an insight into this potentially huge market. Enjoy the read and have a relaxing weekend.

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Europe


Planning ahead ▪ The owners of Italian supermarket chain Esselunga are reportedly seeking to team up with long-term investors to take full control of the business, and in Spain, retailer Dia considers the sales of its drugstore banner Clarel (in Spanish) in a bid to reduce its debt, which has grown to EUR 1,400 million.



Securing growth ▪ LZ Retailytics data reveals that European retailers are increasingly investing in ventures with strong synergies to their core business when diversifying their portfolios. Meanwhile, German grocer Edeka takes a different approach, introducing a 'Food Tech Campus' (with captions in German) in Berlin to attract start-ups.


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Malls in crisis ▪ The demise of “major anchor stores” such as Toys 'R' Us and the rise of online retail has put more than 200 shopping centres across Britain in danger of collapsing into administration, warn British retail analysts. Small towns could suffer 'catastrophic' ramifications.




United States


Healthy tie-ups ▪ In its ongoing efforts to target consumers who are ditching sugary products, soft drink giant Pepsico has acquired nutritional food company Health Warrior. Walmart has teamed up with the Ochsner Health network to launch a health insurance plan for its employees.



Tech moves ▪ Walmart is encouraging store associates to accomplish everyday tasks on the job with their smartphones instead of store-supplied devices to improve efficiency via familiarity. The big-box retailer is also giving augmented reality a shot by adding an AR scanning tool in its iPhone app for product comparison.



Rising numbers ▪ The switch from store to web shopping continues. US online spending during the holiday shopping season is likely to grow 14.8 % this year to USD 124.1 billion, says Adobe Analytics. Meanwhile, coffee giant Starbucks reported a better-than-expected rise in quarterly sales at established cafes.




Australia & Asia & Middle East


Red flag ▪ An Australian industry group is launching a campaign to protest at the arrival of Germany’s Kaufland to the continent, arguing that the retail giant poses a “major risk to any family enterprise and private business”. The company’s first two hypermarkets are expected to open in 2019.



Focus on research ▪ Mondelēz International has set up a technical centre in India, which will support new products and technologies for the company's global brands. Last month, the FMCG giant has announced that it will open a snack innovation hub in the US to concentrate on growth areas.



Online ventures ▪ Toys'R'Us has launched a new e-commerce website in the United Arab Emirates, as part of a wider expansion across the region. Following similar moves by Amazon and Alibaba, Chinese discount e-tailer Pinduoduo is moving (paywall) into online healthcare sales.




Weekend reads


Food for thought ▪ Consumers, retailers and farmers are keen to find new and healthy “superfoods” and consumption-forms, from meal replacement options to vegan meal boxes. Agrifood is an industry worth USD 8 trillion and investors are beginning to acquire a growing taste for it.



Testy talks ▪ The promising market in Brazil so far has proven difficult for Amazon to crack. Challenges include the nation’s tangled tax system, complicated logistics and testy relations with some prominent vendors, who say the Seattle behemoth has shown little flexibility in negotiating.