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April 28, 2020

Investors Dao Foods, New Crop Capital launch plant-based incubator

Two investment firms eyeing rising demand for plant-based food in China has set up an incubator to develop start-ups in the country.

By Dean Best

Investment firms Dao Foods and New Crop Capital, eyeing rising demand for plant-based food in China, have set up an incubator to develop start-ups in the country.

The investors are looking for entrepreneurs to join the incubator and are offering “start-up capital and mentorship support” to five plant-based food companies in China every six months, Dao Foods said.

just-food has asked for further details.

Dao Foods was set up two years ago to launch “innovative and climate-friendly protein products, primarily plant-based and clean meat” in China.

It was set up by three businesses: Dao Ventures, Moonspire Ventures and private-equity firm New Crop Capital.

Dao Ventures is a China-focused “impact investment consortium” primarily consisting of ACBridge Global Advisors – a firm managed by Dao Ventures – China Impact Fund, which helps support SMEs, plus New Ventures Global.

Moonspire Ventures is a second partner behind Dao Foods International. It claims to work with “social enterprises, companies, development institutions and impact investors that are engaged in sustainable business models designed to address the UN Sustainable Development Goals, in particular global poverty, health, and environment”.

New Crop Capital is a regular investor in plant-based protein and has backed companies including Beyond Meat, dairy-free business Miyoko’s Kitchen and cell-cultured seafood start-up BlueNalu.

In March this year, Dao Foods and New Crop Capital announced their investment in Chinese meat-alternative business Starfield Food and Science Technology Limited.

According to that announcement, Shenzhen-based Starfield has focused on “developing strong relationships with restaurant partners” and had “so far has reached product collaboration intents” with foodservice operators including pizza chain Papa John’s and restaurant operator Element Fresh.

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