30 Jan Greenman Group Announces Winners of Growing Further Awards
We are proud to announce that our parent company The Greenman Group has announced the winners of its inaugural Future Food Retail Awards. The awards ceremony, held in Dublin, brought together c. 160 industry leaders from finance, investment, retail, press, entrepreneurship, real estate, and academia.
This year’s overall winner was the French start-up Spore.Bio, who invented the first instant pathogen detection device for factory floors, combining cutting-edge optical solutions with advanced machine learning models to reduce food contamination and food waste. With its innovative solution, Spore.Bio was able to convince the jury of experts at the awards ceremony and was thus honoured both as the overall winner, and in the category Waste Reduction.
Amine Raji, CEO of Spore.Bio, expressed his excitement: “The recognition of winning two awards holds immense significance for us and marks the food industry’s appreciation of how science can effectively address their challenges. We are now embarking on the deployment phase, where we’ll be constructing multiple machines and deploying them in various factories worldwide. The Growing Further Award serves as an additional boost to fulfil our mission, making the food chain safer and more resilient. Our heartfelt thanks go to the Greenman Group for their unwavering efforts and energy dedicated to fostering innovation in the food industry.”
Under the title of “Growing Further,” early-stage businesses could apply with their innovative solutions for all stages of the grocery retail supply chain until October last year, undergoing a multi-stage selection process. The evaluation criteria included topics such as innovation, sustainability, usability and scalability. The pan-european innovation awards have drawn attention from startups across 18 countries, with a total of 12 finalists being invited to the final round from Ireland, France, Sweden, Estonia, Germany, and the UK.
Winner in the category Packaging & Production was Nerit’e from Germany, Optiwiser A.I. Solutions in the category Distribution, Berlin-based company Hibyrd.io in the Retail category, and The Wonki Collective was honoured the People’s Choice Award, which was determined by audience votes, showcasing the collective’s popularity among event attendees.
Tomás Jones, Angel Investor and Director at Sheen River Captech, commented: “The judging panel were incredibly impressed by the innovative ideas and solutions presented. The high standard and quality of submissions underscore the remarkable talent and dedication within the grocery industry. It has been a privilege to witness the work showcased here, and I am excited about the transformative impact these advancements will have on the industry’s future.”
The winners share a prize fund of €100,000, with each category winner receiving €12,500 and the overall winner receiving an additional €50,000, totalling €62,500. The awards provide winners with a networking platform and the opportunity to connect with industry leaders in the retail, distribution and food sectors, fostering potential collaborations for the future.
David O’Meara, Head of Distribution at Greenman and founder of the programme, adds: “We were privileged to host the very first Growing Further Awards and witnessed the culmination of groundbreaking innovations across various industries. We extend our thanks to the members of the jury, who have contributed their valuable time and selected visionary winners through their market expertise and know-how. Greenman, as investor and owner of grocery retail, is deeply involved in the broader food supply chain, and we recognise our responsibility in identifying trends and supporting early-stage businesses poised to make a significant impact on the industry. As we anticipate the next edition, we look forward to the exchange with the various start-ups and the collaborations that will arise from this.”
The Growing Further Future Food Retail Awards will become an annual event by the Greenman Group, with the next edition scheduled for January 2025.