US restaurant chain Chipotle Mexican Grill has revealed the eight ventures selected for its accelerator programme as the company looks to invest in the future of food.
The seven-month Chipotle Aluminaries Project, sponsored by non-profits Chipotle Cultivate Foundation and Uncharted, will nurture and growth the selected companies to “make a positive impact at scale”.
Each venture will receive mentorship and direct coaching from renowned industry leaders, participate in a boot camp, obtain a special Chipotle card with free burritos for a year, and be powered by Chipotle catering as they take their businesses to the next level.
“Since our founding, Chipotle has been committed to cultivating a better world, and we believe the best way to lead the future of food is to inspire others to come along with us on the journey and be a force for good in our industry,” said Chipotle CEO Brian Niccol.
“The eight selected companies represent the best and brightest of what’s next in the food industry, and we can’t wait to help them reach their full potential with the launch of the Chipotle Aluminaries Project.”
In March, the entrepreneurs will participate in a five-day, in-person boot camp in California where they will create their plans for scale and receive direct coaching from industry leaders as well as Chipotle executives.
The ventures will have regular, one-on-one meetings with their mentors and three to four advisors committed to a minimum of six months of mentorship.
The ventures, which work across the food industry, from alternative farming to food waste and recovery, are:
AgVoice – a mobile voice-interaction service that integrates with existing record-keeping apps to help farmers measure good stewardship practices.
American Ostrich Farms – a vertically integrated producer of a better red meat, American Ostrich Farms strives to increase awareness of the resource intensity of food so consumers can make enlightened, healthy choices for themselves and the planet.
Asarasi – produces a sustainable and renewable water that is harvested from the by-products of maple trees.
GrubTubs – allows restaurants, hotels and large cafeterias to drastically reduce what they send to landfills, helping to positively impact the environment. GrubTubs turns the food waste into insect-based animal feed, which helps farmers significantly lower food costs.
ImpactVision – uses hyperspectral imaging to help food businesses deliver consistent product quality, generate premium products and prevent supply chain waste.
Novolyze – develops innovative technologies to help the food industry manufacture safer food, while ensuring strong compliance with international food safety and quality standards.
Rex Animal Health – provides machine learning for a safer and more sustainable food supply. Using data to improve livestock health, the venture is working to reduce the 20% waste in animal protein production.
Sophie’s Kitchen Plant-Based Seafood – creates sustainable plant-based seafood alternatives using innovative ingredients and patent-pending technology.