The European food startups arena is thriving, reaching €9.5B in investments and tripling in size in 2021 compared to the previous year. Southeast Europe is not far behind, producing a large number of agricultural tech startups and online grocery retailers and delivery apps all around the region.
To help you navigate through a complex system of technological innovations in the food industry, The Recursive has prepared yet the most inclusive mapping of the food tech startups of the region. From agricultural and farming tech solutions to food production, distribution, and even food waste, these are the innovative ideas transforming the way we eat and hopefully leading us to a healthier and more sustainable future.
Food Startups in AgriTech and Farming
Founders: Matija Zulj
Founders: Christos Raftogiannis
Another food tech startup, CityCrop is an indoor farming device that allows users to grow fresh and healthy food while controlling and monitoring their crop through a mobile application.
Name: Laava Tech
Founders: Tatsiana Zaretskaya
Laava Tech is an AI-powered indoor farming tool and a combination of software and hardware that is focused on energy efficiency. The artificial lighting system of Laava Tech, helps users manage the growing process of their plants while reducing energy consumption up to 88%.
Founders: Dafina Jeaca
OGOR is a monitoring service that is focused on helping farmers predict the future based on satellite intel and algorithms. The OGOR application helps farmers predict soil fertility, sowing and harvesting dates, and other factors important in farming.
Founders: Catalin Manolache
MapMyApple is an AI-powered mobile software application for apple management developed by the company Fresh Agriculture Technologies. The system provides users with daily customized recommendations for spraying, irrigation, and fertilization of their orchards.
Founders: Momchil Hristov, Magdalena Linkova, Jordan Tsanev
Next on our food tech startups map, MicroCity is a solution focused on popularizing urban farming through growing microgreens in vertical greenhouses.
Agremo is an agricultural AI-powered platform and data analysis software that aims to help farmers and other agriculture professionals have a detailed insight into their plant and field growing process throughout the growing season.
Name: Cooperation Manager
Founders: Radoslav Pilja
Cooperation Manager provides a software solution and logistical support for cereals and oilseed traders. The electronic system enables communication between clients, warehouses, cooperative, millers, and processors.
Agrocams is a camera system that helps to spray weeds while cutting in half the use of herbicides. The system is intended for middle and big-sized farms.
Name: Atfield Technologies
Founders: Vikasin Pejovic
Atfield Technologies helps vineyards grow high-quality permanent crops by providing data-driven management solutions.
Name: Atar AI
Founders: Filip Injac
Atar AI is an AI-powered system that reduces chemicals usage in fields by enabling spraying machines to perform precise weed detection and spot spraying.
ONDO is an all-in-one cloud automated system, software and hardware, for small and medium agribusinesses. The company works on helping crop farms with irrigation, fertigation, and climate control for various crops.
Founders: Ivana Pajčin
NSoilab is a startup producing eco-friendly microbial-based products for sustainable and organic agriculture that would, in turn, produce high-quality and healthy food and improve soil quality.
Name: Apiary Book
Founders: Bogdan Iordache
Apiary Book is a mobile application for beekeepers that helps record information on health and maintenance of each bee colony, treatments to be carried out, and other operations in the field of beekeeping.
Startups in Food Production
Name: Manna Food Solutions
Founders: Madalina Ilie , Sorina Uleia, Marius Pasculea
Manna Food Solutions is another food tech startup, building multiples solutions in the area. For instance, it is building a 3D food printer designed as a vending machine. The technology is set up to make nutritious cooked food in the form of food tablets for professionals in humanitarian emergencies, space travel, and with other special dietary requirements.
Founders: Miroslav Zapryanov
Cupffee is a Bulgarian startup that has developed an edible and biodegradable patented cup for coffee made out of cereal. The cups serve as an alternative to traditional disposable cups for hot and cold drinks.
Country: Croatia, Slovenia
Founders : David Dravinec, Marko Dravinec
Juicefast produces natural high-quality detox juices and healthy meals. Unlike the classic pasteurization, the company uses the high hydrostatic pressure (HPP) processing that helps preserve taste, color, texture, and nutrients of the food and drinks.
Name: Bluana Foods
Founders: Florin Irimescu
Bluana Foods is a vegan food startup focused on creating a plant-based salmon and tuna for sashimi. The company uses a molecular gastronomy approach and is focused on reducing the consumption of ocean fish.
Founders: Raul Ciurtin, Eberhart Raducanu
Founders: Cristian Tudor
Startups in Food Distribution
Founders: Pop Catalin Ciprian,
ZenMarket is a local Romanian online supermarket for natural traditional products. The company works with small and medium sized manufacturers, helping them distribute their products to consumers.
Name: Health in Box
Name: Monte Nativo
Country: Bulgaria, Germany
Founders: Bozhidar Iliev
A Bavaria-based startup with Bulgarian origins, Monte Nativo, is a digital marketplace offering natural foods, dietary supplements, and personal care products.
Cidrani is a Croatian AI-powered platform introducing a set of gut health management tools. Currently the brand is known for its personalized fermented essences packs for gut health, like kombucha and chaga.
FoxCrop is a SEE B2B digital marketplace connecting farmers, restaurants, and food service providers. A one-stop solution for 2 industries. This year the company received its initial investment from the Bulgarian VC Vitosha Venture Partners.
Name: Pop Market
Pop Market is a Greek on-demand grocery delivery market startup working on the dark store grocery model. Dark stores are warehouses and distribution spaces working to fulfill on-demand online orders of retailers.
Name: Come on
Venomia is a tech startup helping in beekeeping. The solution helps in automating, managing, and digitizing the processes of collecting venom from an apiary. The company aims to have an online marketplace for bee venom products.
Founders: Sergey Petrov
Pollenity helps beekeepers make informed decisions through IoT solution products. The startup works on high-tech beehive systems that help increase productivity and better manage beekeeping operations, as well as on an e-commerce platform for honey products.
Food Startups in Nutrition
Wello.ai is an AI powered app providing gamified nutritional information and personalized diet plans for children and their parents. The focus is on building healthier lifestyle habits among family members.
Founders: Laurentiu Nicolae
NutritIO is an automation application that helps nutrition professionals personalize nutrition plans and stay in touch with their patients.
Name: Mooshee app
Founders: Alex Chirita
Mooshee app is a tool for parents that creates personalized meal baby plans based on specialists’ recommendations and the users’ preferences. The user is also able to order the chosen meal plan with one click.
Startups in Food Waste Prevention
Next in our food tech startups list, Nasekomo produces protein feed alternatives for aquaculture and livestock by converting organic food waste into insect biomass. Following the great potential of the agricultural sector in the region, Nasekomo focuses on bringing AI-enabled automated solutions to the sector and tackling the global problem of ever-increasing protein consumption.
Watch a podcast episode with the founder of Nasekomo, Xavier Marcenac, here.
Name: Better Origin
Another insect tech startup working on converting food waste into animal feed through bioconversion is Greek-owned Better Origin. It uses an AI-driven solution to “fix the food chain” by moving animal feed production onto the farms where the food is consumed with the help of insects. This way the feed consumption costs are expected to be reduced and emissions lowered.
Founders: Jane Dimitrova , Velin Kerkov
Foodobox is a mobile application that provides an opportunity for restaurants, grocery stores and bakeries to sell their not sold-during-the-day products at a discount. The startup is focused on bridging the gap between businesses and end users and reducing food waste in Bulgaria.
Name: Foody.to (prev. Sofia2Go)
Foody.to is one more food waste reduction project founded in 2016 that offers a marketplace where restaurants, cafes, and hotels can sell their products at the end of the day.
Bonapp.eco is a mobile application partnering with food businesses and fighting food waste, this time in Romania. Bonapp.eco allows consumers to purchase close to expiration date at a discounted price. The startup is planning to expand in Eastern Europe in the near future.
Coffe-eco deploys espresso ground waste as a biomass used to produce sustainable raw materials for the cosmetics and food industries. The company plans to expand to other industries as well, and make use of the coffee waste in furniture raw materials, biomethane, and fertilizers.