Foodbytes! pitch competition wants to connect Canada’s food-focused startups

rabobank foodbytes austin

Global food and agribusiness bank Rabobank is bringing its FoodBytes! pitch competition to Canada for the first time.

Taking place on May 16, 2018, the competition invites startups that demonstrate traction, scalability, and a focus on sustainability and social impact.

Since launching in 2015, FoodBytes! has attracted 2,700 attendees and received over 1,100 applications from over 30 countries. More than 170 companies make up the FoodBytes! alumni community, including Canada-affiliated startups PieShell, One Hop Kitchen, and FlashFood.

“As a startup, it can be hard to figure out where your money is best spent.”
– Cheryl Clements

“As a startup, it can be hard to figure out where your money is best spent. For us, investing time and money to be a part of FoodBytes! was a huge win and we are continuing to see the positive effects across all parts of our business,” said Cheryl Clements, founder of PieShell and a FoodBytes! San Francisco 2017 alumni and sponsor.

“We are huge fans of FoodBytes! and are eager to share the lessons learned with our fellow foodpreneurs: spending money to connect with the right people early on has high ROI. It gets your brand in front of new audiences and allows you to adjust your strategy if need be.”

Startups are recognized with awards like the People’s Choice Award, Judge’s Choice Award (which includes an invitation for the annual Food and Agribusiness Summit), and the Highly-Commended Award. The event itself also provides an opportunity for startups to build their network.

“The 60 startups that presented on the FoodBytes! stage in 2017 pitched a wide range of new solutions to food and agriculture challenges. The leading trends displayed included clean product makeovers, plant-based protein and food waste reduction,” said Paula Savanti, Rabobank senior consumer food analyst. “We are looking forward to seeing how those trends will continue build momentum in 2018 and also to see if new trends including meal and food replacement drinks, fermented beverages and personalized nutrition will gain traction.”

The FoodBytes! 2018 North American tour will kick off in San Francisco on March 1, followed by Montreal, then on to New York City in Fall 2018. Applications for Montreal are open here until March 11.

Feature photo by Kassie Borreson

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang is BetaKit's News Editor. Follow her on Twitter @jessicagalangg or send her pitches to