Soil carbon, COVID-19 startup extinction, and investing for impact – AgThentic June Newsletter

Articles, podcasts and reflections from the month Food system reflections, startup support, and updates from AgThentic View in your browser and share Top three reads this month 1. 3 Challenges AgTech Can Solve Today to Help Mitigate Climate Change An expert panel convened by the Australian government recently made its recommendations on opportunities to drive additional carbon abatement, noting in particular the barriers for agricultural players to receive revenue on a timely basis for carbon sequestered in soil. This article by soil sampling company FarmLab CEO Sam Duncan digs into the nuances of the challenges, and how agtech can help by reducing the burden of administration, data collection, and quantification.
Soil carbon was a hot topic globally this month – beyond the King Review recommendations in Australia (referenced in Sam’s article above), June also saw:
– the introduction of the Growing Climate Solutions Act to Congress looking to solve similar challenges for US farmers; – another $300m raised by Indigo Ag; – Cargill align with the Iowa Soybean Association’s Soil & Water Outcomes Fund to pay farmers to sequester carbon – And a $10m seed raise by Soil Carbon Co, an Australian carbon-fixing microfungi startup
These are just some of the recent efforts in what is an increasingly crowded space: enabling carbon markets. We expect to continue to see new technologies to drive and measure sequestration, enabling regulations and underlying science, and new business models to align incentives and overcome barriers. 2. Save your startups: using policy to kickstart the post-crisis economy Startup Genome, a research organization best known for publishing an annual Global Startup Ecosystem Report , recently released a COVID-19 survey of startups globally.
They found that one third of scale-ups (post-Series A) had less than 6 months of runway in the bank, and more than 40% of all startups had less than 3 months of runway remaining. With venture investment globally down by 20%, these companies, innovations and workers are at significant risk. In this article and the accompanying report , Startup Genome lays out the need for policy-makers to act to prevent a mass extinction event, and offers key design principles for policy-makers. 3. Inside the rope: Investing for Impact It is tempting to think that impact investing needs to come with compromises. But in this podcast , Cullen Gunn, CEO of Kilter Rural , explains just how wrong that perspective can be, outlining in detail how impact and returns can powerfully combine in agriculture. Cullen has a uniquely qualified opinion about the amazing potential for non-concessional returns in impact investing in agriculture. You’ll come away with great insights about how water, one of Australia’s most scarce, precious, and controversial resources, works at scale. New on the AgTech… So What podcast The podcast this month features guests from two very different industries, sharing their views on leadership and social license.
Austral Fisheries is the world’s only certified carbon-neutral fishery. CEO David Carter is a sustainability pioneer in the industry globally, leading initiatives to reduce overfishing, bycatch, and illegal fishing, and act on other environmental issues like climate change.
Renee Anderson is a cotton farmer from Queensland who has been a science communicator and cotton industry champion for many years. On her recent Nuffield scholarship, she looked at how science communication and social media influence the adoption of best management practices.
Both David and Renee talk about the benefits (and challenges) of taking a stand publically, how collaborating to develop solutions is critical, and how technology is enabling industries to meet consumer demands.
These interviews show that industry changemakers come in all forms from individual farmers to listed company CEOs.
Listen to the full conversations at the links below, and sign up to the email list to get notified when episodes drop. 🔉 David Carter on becoming the world’s only carbon neutral fishing company 🔉 Renée Anderson “Cotton Farm Girl” on social media and social license News across the AgThentic Group The team at Tenacious Ventures was delighted this month to announce the fund’s first investment, co-leading an $8M Series A in Australian waste management company Goterra with Grok Ventures .
Goterra is an Australian company automating biological processes to manage organic waste and turn it into valuable food and feed. They’re a perfect example of technology and business model innovation to solve big problems for ag, and we couldn’t be more excited to officially join the Goterra journey!
Check out the write-up over on Agri Investor here .
[image: Share] Share [image: Tweet] Tweet [image: Share] Share [image: Forward] Forward That’s all from us this month! If this is your first time on the AgThentic newsletter hit subscribe below, and if you liked what you saw – here’s the link to share. Let us know if you liked the format, and have a great July.
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