The food industry has undergone a remarkable transformation thanks to the rapidly evolving world of technology. Experts predict that the foodtech sector will experience tremendous growth in the next five years, with estimates suggesting its value will reach approximately USD 342.5 billion by 2027.
By capitalising on this projected growth and the shifting trends in the sector, the top foodtech startups in Southeast Asia can seize the opportunity to utilise technology to address various challenges within the food industry. Some of the companies embracing this opportunity are:
We explore foodtech in Indonesia: We take a closer look at the emergence of seafood startups
Indonesia’s prominent plant-based foodtech startup specialises in producing Asian-flavoured whole-cut plant-based meat. Green Rebel’s chicken and other meat-like products are clean-labelled, incorporating natural non-GMO ingredients without the addition of MSG.
Since its foundation in 2020, Green Rebel’s mission has been to offer delicious, affordable, and accessible plant-based meat options while minimising environmental impact. In Indonesia, the company’s products are available in over 800 food and beverage establishments, including popular brands like Starbucks, Ikea, and Domino’s, and more than 100 retailers nationwide.
In a significant development on March 30th, 2022, Green Rebel successfully raised USD 7 million in a pre-series A funding round, attracting investments from notable stakeholders such as Unovis and Better Bite Ventures. The new funds will help expand the company’s R&D team further and increase production to enter new markets.
Secai Marche, a Japanese startup, operates a B2B farm-to-table fulfilment platform in Malaysia, enabling restaurants to purchase high-quality products directly from farmers. It directly sources over 4,000 items (fresh vegetables, fruit, eggs, and chilled seafood, among others) from farmers in Southeast Asia and Japan. It claims to have partnered with over 500 retailers and HORECA customers.
In January 2023, it secured USD 1.6 million in a Series A fundraising round, bringing the total funding raised by the farm-tech company to USD 4.5 million. Some investors in this round include The Agribusiness Investment & Consultation, Spiral Ventures Asia Fund I, and existing supporter Beyond Next Ventures.
The acquired capital will assist in developing an in-house demand forecast system, streamlining operations and enhancing efficiency within the company.
This Manila-headquartered startup, established in 2019, is making significant strides in the cloud kitchen industry in the Philippines and Vietnam, primarily focusing on food delivery. With a diverse range of more than 30 brands in the Philippines and over 20 in Vietnam, including popular names like Burger Beast, 24/7 Eats, Sulit Chicken, Pia’s Kitchen, and Healthy Appetite, it is continuously expanding its portfolio to cater to diverse consumer preferences.
In September 2022, it raised USD 7 million in funding, led by venture capital firm Nordstar. This fresh injection of capital will be instrumental in the development of CloudEats’ brands and further strengthen the presence of its celebrity brands.
Additionally, the funding will fuel the growth of its team, enabling them to bolster their shared kitchen technology and enhance operational efficiency.
The GrowHub, a Singaporean-based startup, is an innovative web-enabled technology plug-and-play ecosystem builder focusing on food traceability and carbon credits. Leveraging agri-food and blockchain technology developed at the FIPWA centre, The GrowHub provides access to trusted premium products at affordable prices.
Since its launch, the company has dedicated itself to forming partnerships with leading regional companies and expanding its ecosystem network to make emerging technologies accessible to businesses of all sizes.
In March, the startup concluded a Pre-Series B funding round, securing USD 3 million from a group of strategic individual investors, including the company’s Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Lester Chan. These new funds will help further develop the company’s technology offerings and enhance its technological capabilities as it continues its expansion across the Asia Pacific region.
Another Singaporean-based foodtech startup, Alchemy Foodtech, aims to help the world eat better quality refined carbohydrates by lowering the sugar impact from foods and reducing sugar intake. It uses its patented Alchemy Fibre technology designed to aid Carb & Sugar Control, effectively reducing sugar levels and lowering the glycemic index in carbohydrate staples, desserts, and dairy products while preserving their delicious taste.
In December 2022, the company secured USD 3 million from investors, including public-listed Thai President Foods, Pine Venture Partners and Selera Kapital, an investment arm of Sour Sally Group. Existing investors include global seafood leader Thai Union, Fuchsia Venture Capital, Heritas Capital and SEEDS Capital.
As the food industry continues to evolve, these top foodtech startups in Southeast Asia strive to spearhead innovation and transform how we interact with food. From farm-to-table deliveries and personalised culinary adventures to connecting home cooks and promoting healthy lifestyles, these startups are reshaping the region’s gastronomic landscape. Their ingenuity meets consumers’ demands and addresses broader concerns of sustainability, convenience, and wellness.