📊 FoodTech in graphs: packaging and energy drinks

For this week I have selected the 4 graphs and reports of the past month.

Energy drinks are a hit, and investors are betting on the beverage category 

Monster released its results for 2022, which are astonishing as always. It’s actually a quite old company (founded in the 30s) which launched Monster in 2002. As shown here, $100 invested in Monster in 2002 would be worth… $113,000 today.

This is something that investors have not missed. As you can see in the graph (based on DigitalFoodLab’s database), investments in European drinks & beverage startups (a sub-category of our food science category, here are the definitions) have risen steadily over the years and more so in 2021 and 2022. This is even more impressive for 2022, when overall FoodTech investments are significantly down. If investors and entrepreneurs are not all betting on energy drinks, far from it, this upward trend shows how strong is the potential for disruption in the beverage industry.

Mapping of the main European startups working on packaging (reusable and alternatives)
Sifted released a report on European startups working around packaging. It contains a great mapping of the players in Europe, with a focus on both reusable packaging and alternatives to plastic.


This space receives very little investment, with around €40M invested in startups per year between 2019 and 2021, which rose to €90M in 2022 (DigitalFoodLab’s data).


To put that in context, we can use another recently published report, this time by the European Investment bank, on how to cut plastics pollution. Europe can recycle 8 million tonnes of plastic today (which leads to 6.3Mt of recyclates). To reach Europe’s goal of 10Mt recyclates by 2025, an investment of up to €5.7B would be needed.
We can see that investments beyond recycling plastics are very limited. To reach our climate goals, the development of the alternative packaging ecosystem must be prioritized.

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