Finalists of the Fi Europe 2021 Innovation Awards & Startup Innovation Challenge confirmed

Recognition for innovative solutions in the food and beverages ingredients industry.

Frankfurt / Germany, 1 November 2021: The nominees have been revealed, after the jury of experts from all areas of the food industry named the 28 companies who will be competing for the Fi Europe Innovation Awards and Startup Innovation Challenge. The finalists will present their submissions in a final pitch to the jury behind closed doors, and winners will be announced live during Fi Europe 2021, co-located with Hi Europe, on 30 November and 1 December. Again, topics such as sustainability and plant-based top the shortlist, mirroring current market trends and developments.

Finalists nominated for the 6th Fi Global Startup Innovation Challenge:

Category 1: Most Innovative Plant-Based or Alternative Ingredient

Moolec Science (UK) for producing real animal proteins in plants to develop affordable, animal-free ingredients

SACCHA (Germany) for extracting proteins from microorganisms such as brewer's yeast that are similar to egg protein, only without the egg, allowing manufacturers to create authentic alternatives to animal products

Sophie's BioNutrients (The Netherlands/Singapore) for developing a new and sustainable plant-based protein from microalgae

Time-travelling Milkman (The Netherlands) for producing and distributing plant-based fat components for creamier, healthier and more sustainable plant-based products

Update Foods (France) for producing the next generation of alternative dairy powered by algae and faba protein

Category 2: Most Innovative F&B Ingredient or Processing Technology

California Cultured (USA) for growing non-GMO chocolate from cocoa stem cells via cell culture technology and, therefore, producing chocolate that is not affected by deforestation or exploitation of farmers

Eighth Day Foods (Australia) for enabling food manufacturers to produce pioneering, premium, plant-based products under their own trusted brands

Hoow Foods Pte Ltd (Singapore) for promoting healthy living through improved nutrition by using deep insights of foods and ingredients to create sustainable and healthier foods 

NoPalm Ingredients (The Netherlands) for replacing palm oil as an ingredient in food, cosmetics and detergents to reduce carbon emissions, and save tropical rainforests

Umami Meats (Singapore) for producing delicious, nutritious and healthy cultivated fish that promote the future of sustainable seafood

Category 3: Most Innovative Service or Technology Supporting F&B

Allozymes (Singapore) for applying its proprietary platform technology to rapidly develop novel enzymes, revolutionising the way industry can produce complex natural products

Mi Terro (USA) for its unique approach to use Big Data to develop compostable, alternative, single-use plastic packaging from plant-based agricultural waste (Israel) for its proprietary, breakthrough enzyme technology platform that converts high-calorie sugars found in natural juices into virtually calorie-free sugars, such as allulose.

Nominated for the Fi Europe Innovation Awards 2021:

Clean Label & Natural Innovation Award

Bunge Loders Croklaan (The Netherlands) for Karibon, a 100% shea-based cocoa butter equivalent (CBE) that combines all the processing benefits and versatility of leading CBEs with the nutritional and sustainability benefits of shea

MartinoRossi Spa (Italy) for its Meat Substitute Mix Ragù, a plant-based Bolognese- style sauce mix that is allergen-, GMO- and gluten-free

Millbo (Italy) for X-Tra Guard, a natural ingredient that eliminates the need for the preservative sorbic acid. X-tra Guard is derived entirely from the natural botanical components of rowan berries

Lutkala Ltd (Poland) for their food thickener Lutkala, a natural replacement for chemical or synthetic thickeners such as pectins, modified starch or xanthan gum.

Food Tech Innovation Award

AAK (Sweden) for AkoBisc®️ GO!, a structured, emulsion-facilitating process in biscuit production that offers longer shelf-life and multiple sensorial benefits

Chr. Hansen A/S (Denmark) for its FreshQ®️ food cultures, enabling fermentation-based biological protection against yeast and moulds without undesirable sensory effects and acidity development, thus helping producers to naturally prolong shelf-life and quality

ICL Food Specialties (USA) for its JOHA®️ SF Line of emulsifying salts used to optimise protein content in processed cheese, offering various benefits.

Health Innovation Award

ADM (USA) for its HT-BPL1 postbiotic, an ingredient targeting the gut microbiome that can be used by food and beverage manufacturers in a variety of applications requiring heat processing conditions

Arjuna Natural Pvt Lrd (India) for Rhuleave-K®️ with its unique SPEED™️ technology for the first natural formula for safe and effective pain management

Bunge Loders Croklaan (The Netherlands) for NuliGo, a uniquely structured medium and long chain triglyceride that supports muscle building, maintenance and recovery, making it an ideal ingredient for sports nutrition, healthy ageing and medical foods

NutriLeads (The Netherlands) for BeniCaros™️, a proprietary ingredient for immune health that has been clinically proven to support immune function and optimise response to potential threats and stresses

Vaneeghen – Futureceuticals (The Netherlands) for S7™️, a plant-based formula containing seven phytonutrient-rich botanicals proven in clinical studies to help increase nitric oxide and reduce oxidative stress.

Plant-based Innovation Award

DSM (The Netherlands) for Delvo®️Plant, a unique portfolio of enzymes helping to improve the nutritional value of plant-based drinks, and create gluten-reduced dairy alternative varieties with optimized taste, texture and mouthfeel

DSM (The Netherlands) for Maxavor®️ Fish YE, a natural fish flavour derived from algal oil for producing authentic fish alternatives, including vegetarian fish nuggets and vegan fish sauce

Sprau (Finland) for the germinated faba bean Sprau. Germination allows the full nutritional potential of the faba bean to unfold without digestive discomfort or a ‘beany’ flavour.

Sensory Innovation Award

AAK (Sweden) for AkoBisc®️ GO!, a biscuit fat that is low in saturated fatty acids and free from tropical fats, offering a unique sensory biscuit quality, with a crunchy bite, no fatbloom and no discoloration over time 

Cargill (USA) for Bright White Chocolate to replace regular, yellowish-white chocolate while keeping the regular ingredients’ list the same as for normal white chocolate.

Sustainability Innovation Award

AAK (Sweden) for enabling chocolate to make deforestation-free claims with ILLEXAO™️ SC 70, which is a plant-based ingredient for chocolate and confectionery

Fonterra Cooperative Group/NZMP (New Zealand) for acting on climate change today through carbon zero capability with its recently launched first carbonzero™️ certified ingredient – Organic Butter.

What we can clearly see is that for many companies, innovation and further development continue even in the current climate, which is by no means an easy task. And the results are impressive: With their solutions, the shortlisted companies are all making an important contribution to the issues and demands that are driving the industry.