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How the crisis is shaping investors’ strategies • TechCrunch


To state the (painfully) obvious: the fates of agriculture and climate change are inextricably linked.

Time dictates what grows where and when, but as the Earth warms under a woolen blanket of excess carbon, agriculture is especially vulnerable in ways you might not expect.

Record heat and droughts are frying the grasses farmers depend on to feed livestock, warmer temperatures are a boon for pests and fungi that harm crops, smoke from wildfires is damaging crops, and conditions extreme weather and rising seas make it harder to move around (including food). Threats to food security and livelihoods continue to exist.

Undoubtedly, this has some tech marketers salivating. As startups look for ways to adapt the global food system to today’s chaos, we contacted seven agtech investors to better understand how the climate crisis has influenced their strategies to date.

“Climate challenges are not new to anyone operating in the broader food and agriculture space, so our approach is to invest in solutions that can help mitigate and adapt to climate change,” said Camila Petignat. , Yield Lab partner, to TechCrunch.

Topics the company is looking at “include soil and water conservation, improving use of agricultural inputs, shifting from chemical to biological crop protection solutions, and reducing food waste,” said Petignat.

“We could argue,” added Petignat, “that the increased awareness of carbon markets in recent years has sparked new opportunities at the intersection of agtech and fintech, a space that interests us.”

“India is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change,” Jinesh Shah, Managing Partner of Omnivore, told TechCrunch. “Agriculture accounts for 20% of India’s GHG emissions, but the sector is also extremely vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, which could begin to threaten India’s food security over the next decade. he said. Agriculture is responsible for about a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the EPA.

Shah added that the company’s strategy is to “invest in startups that align with one or more of our four key pillars – increasing smallholder profitability, building smallholder resilience, improving agricultural sustainability and catalyze climate action”. The investor went on to say that agtech in India must “evolve beyond digital technologies (agricultural platforms and B2B marketplaces), and we are looking to agrilife sciences to find long-term solutions to change. climatic”.

Read the full survey to find out where investors are looking to invest, what they’re thinking right now, how best to introduce and contact them, and understand what emerging technologies have caught their attention.


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