On a mission to foster food innovation: Food Tech 500 2020

Forward Fooding

Forward Fooding is a global network, powered by entrepreneurs that provides the necessary support and velocity to enable collaborations and partnerships between established food organizations and startups. They are on a mission to foster food innovation in order to redesign our food system. In short, they believe entrepreneurship can make a difference in solving some of the biggest issues that are affecting our current food system. That combined with the infrastructure and expertise from corporates is the ‘secret sauce’ to create a brighter future of food.

Simultaneously, shifting consumer preferences are putting huge pressure on existing business models and traditional food companies and brands. As Fortune magazine summarizes, “Big food is under attack from startup granola.”

As a former executive at a Fortune 500 beverage company, Alessio D’Antino (CEO) became increasingly frustrated with the company’s rigid approach to innovation and their ‘meaningless’ agenda and decided to move to Silicon Valley in search of inspiration. After stumbling upon a number of brave entrepreneurs who were building highly innovative ventures, he started realising that startups were going to play a larger role in solving some of the biggest challenges affecting our global food system. Since then Forward Fooding has built a global community of innovators in FMCG’s and FoodTech. They now work with food and beverage companies of all sizes to help embrace more collaborative models to innovation in order to create a brighter future of food.

FoodTech Data Navigator

Forward Fooding already published a map and directory of food startups on their website. However, they saw a bigger opportunity in the FoodTech data they had collected over the years. Startups might want to see who else is doing similar services as them or who might be a good supplier, corporates search for startups to collaborate with and investors wanted to screen a portfolio of startups. With over 1500 active users and a great network, they felt the need for a real data platform.

In 2019 they introduced the FoodTech Data Navigator, powered by DataScouts, the world’s first data intelligence platform for the AgriFoodTech Ecosystem. The platform allows the end-users to discover the latest startups, accelerators, investors and key players in the global AgriFoodTech sector.

Collaborating for success

We worked closely together with the team of Forward Fooding to launch the FoodTech Data Navigator. First of all, we incorporated the expert taxonomy reflecting the food innovation space. During a couple of co-creation sessions, we streamlined the user experience. Finally we uploaded and further enriched the data and we jointly configured the FoodTech Data Navigator to provide valuable insights to startups, corporates and investors engaged in fostering food innovation.

The Forward Fooding team launched the FoodTech Navigator with a well targeted multi-channel marketing campaign. Right after the launch, users started to sign up for a 2-week demo period to experience the possibilities and opportunities of the platform

In the meanwhile the FoodTech Data Navigator hosts 4300+ highly curated data entries including international AgriFoodTech startup companies, accelerators & incubators, investment funds, and business angels.

2020 FOODTECH 500


Inspired by the Fortune 500, Forward Fooding presented the official 2020 FoodTech 500, 2020’s definitive list of global entrepreneurial talent at the intersection between food, technology and sustainability.

Forward Fooding shared the key challenges, the global food ecosystem is facing and answered how FoodTech address the rapid need for change across the food ecosystem. According to Forward Fooding, these challenges require innovative solutions to solve them and the answer is Agrifoodtech.

Forward Fooding saw a truly global response to their call for applicants with over 1.200 applications from 52 different countries, across 8 different categories of AgriFoodTech.

According to key statistics of the 2020 FoodTech 500 companies, there are 374 revenue-generating companies in the list, 423 companies received investment, and more than €3.9 Billion funds raised over time.

FoodTech 500 embraces the startup and scale-up success stories shaping the future of food. In total, 78.2% of FoodTech 500 companies are less than 5  years old and 56.1% are at pre-seed or seed-stage funding. Yet despite their early stage, close to 75%  are revenue-generating.

To create the FoodTech 500 official list, the data from each application was processed using the FoodTech Data Navigator‘s unique algorithm combined with DataScouts’ algorithms to calculate the business size score as well as a digital footprint score. The sustainability score has been derived from a bespoke model based on the environmental data collected from the finalists. 

Business Size Score:

The business size score is generated via a proprietary algorithm that predicts business growth based on a number of financial performance indicators. These include the number of employees, funding stage, amount of funds raised to date, as well as the number of offices from which each company operates.

The digital footprint score is calculated via a proprietary algorithm that generates a prediction of each company’s digital presence growth, taking into account each company’s website traffic, social media performance, and follower growth.


In the absence of a global framework to measure the business sustainability impact specifically for FoodTech companies, we have chosen to create, in collaboration with experts from the University of Turin,  a unique sustainability score that takes into consideration selected Sustainable Development Goals from the United Nations.
To learn more visit ForwardFooding methodology page.



ForwardFooding encourages their partners to use the power of data to transform their current business and to strengthen their competitive positioning by

Mapping the most relevant companies for your organisation

Building and sharing collective intelligence with colleagues

Identifying up-and-coming technology trends


Register Now and Strengthen your Competitive Position with DataScouts

Download the Forward foodıng 2020’s food tech 500 whıte paper

Access the official list of 2020’s FoodTech 500 winners and discover the data behind the list

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Prefer to contact a human being? Contact us at natan.debie@datascouts.eu

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Prefer to contact a human being? Contact us at natan.debie@datascouts.eu