Finalists of the Fi Europe 2021 Innovation Awards confirmed

The nominees have been revealed, after the jury of experts from all areas of the food industry named the 28 companies who will be competing for the Fi Europe Innovation Awards and Startup Innovation Challenge. The finalists will present their submissions in a final pitch to the jury behind closed doors, and winners will be announced live during Fi Europe 2021, co-located with Hi Europe, on 30 November and 1 December. Again, topics such as sustainability and plant-based top the shortlist, mirroring current market trends and developments.

Finalists nominated for the Fi Global Startup Innovation Challenge 2021:
Category 1: Most Innovative Plant-Based or Alternative Ingredient

  • Moolec Science (UK) for producing real animal proteins in plants to develop
    affordable, animal-free ingredients
  • SACCHA (Germany) for extracting proteins from microorganisms such as
    brewer’s yeast that are similar to egg protein, only without the egg, allowing
    manufacturers to create authentic alternatives to animal products
  • Sophie’s BioNutrients (The Netherlands/Singapore) for developing a new
    and sustainable plant-based protein from microalgae
  • Time-Travelling Milkman (The Netherlands) for producing and
    distributing plant-based fat components for creamier, healthier and more
    sustainable plant-based products
  • Update Foods (France) for producing the next generation of alternative dairy
    powered by algae and faba protein

Category 2: Most Innovative F&B Ingredient or Processing Technology

  • California Cultured (USA) for growing non-GMO chocolate from cocoa stem
    cells via cell culture technology and, therefore, producing chocolate that is
    not affected by deforestation or exploitation of farmers
  • Eighth Day Foods (Australia) for enabling food manufacturers to produce
    pioneering, premium, plant-based products under their own trusted brands
  • Hoow Foods Pte (Singapore) for promoting healthy living through
    improved nutrition by using deep insights of foods and ingredients to create
    sustainable and healthier foods
  • NoPalm Ingredients (The Netherlands) for replacing palm oil as an
    ingredient in food, cosmetics and detergents to reduce carbon emissions, and
    save tropical rainforests
  • Umami Meats (Singapore) for producing delicious, nutritious and healthy
    cultivated fish that promote the future of sustainable seafood

Category 3: Most Innovative Service or Technology Supporting F&B

  • Allozymes (Singapore) for applying its proprietary platform technology to
    rapidly develop novel enzymes, revolutionising the way industry can produce
    complex natural products
  • Mi Terro (USA) for its unique approach to use Big Data to develop
    compostable, alternative, single-use plastic packaging from plant-based
    agricultural waste
  • (Israel) for its proprietary, breakthrough enzyme technology
    platform that converts high-calorie sugars found in natural juices into virtually
    calorie-free sugars, such as allulose

Nominated for the Fi Europe Innovation Awards 2021:

Clean Label & Natural Innovation Award

  • Bunge Loders Croklaan (The Netherlands) for Karibon, a 100% shea-based
    cocoa butter equivalent (CBE) that combines all the processing benefits and
    versatility of leading CBEs with the nutritional and sustainability benefits of
  • MartinoRossi Spa (Italy) for its Meat Substitute Mix Ragù, a plant-based
    Bolognese- style sauce mix that is allergen-, GMO- and gluten-free
  • Millbo (Italy) for X-Tra Guard, a natural ingredient that eliminates the need
    for the preservative sorbic acid. X-tra Guard is derived entirely from the
    natural botanical components of rowan berries
  • Lutkala (Poland) for their food thickener Lutkala, a natural replacement
    for chemical or synthetic thickeners such as pectins, modified starch or
    xanthan gum

Food Tech Innovation Award

  • AAK (Sweden) for AkoBisc GO!, a structured, emulsion-facilitating process in
    biscuit production that offers longer shelf-life and multiple sensorial benefits
  • Chr. Hansen A/S (Denmark) for its FreshQ food cultures, enabling
    fermentation-based biological protection against yeast and moulds without
    undesirable sensory effects and acidity development, thus helping producers
    to naturally prolong shelf-life and quality
  • ICL Food Specialties (USA) for its JOHA SF Line of emulsifying salts used to
    optimise protein content in processed cheese, offering various benefits
    Health Innovation Award
  • ADM (USA) for its HT-BPL1 postbiotic, an ingredient targeting the gut
    microbiome that can be used by food and beverage manufacturers in a
    variety of applications requiring heat processing conditions
  • Arjuna Natural Pvt  (India) for Rhuleave-K with its unique SPEED
    technology for the first natural formula for safe and effective pain management
  • Bunge Loders Croklaan (The Netherlands) for NuliGo, a uniquely
    structured medium and long chain triglyceride that supports muscle building,
    maintenance and recovery, making it an ideal ingredient for sports nutrition,
    healthy ageing and medical foods
  • NutriLeads (The Netherlands) for BeniCaros, a proprietary ingredient for
    immune health that has been clinically proven to support immune function and
    optimise response to potential threats and stresses
  • vaneeghen – Futureceuticals (The Netherlands) for S7, a plant-based
    formula containing seven phytonutrient-rich botanicals proven in clinical
    studies to help increase nitric oxide and reduce oxidative stress

Plant-based Innovation Award

  • DSM (The Netherlands) for Delvo Plant, a unique portfolio of enzymes
    helping to improve the nutritional value of plant-based drinks, and create
    gluten-reduced dairy alternative varieties with optimised taste, texture and
  • DSM (The Netherlands) for Maxavor Fish YE, a natural fish flavour derived
    from algal oil for producing authentic fish alternatives, including vegetarian
    fish nuggets and vegan fish sauce
  • Sprau (Finland) for the germinated faba bean Sprau. Germination allows the
    full nutritional potential of the faba bean to unfold without digestive discomfort
    or a ‘beany’ flavour

Sensory Innovation Award

  • AAK (Sweden) for AkoBisc GO!, a biscuit fat that is low in saturated fatty
    acids and free from tropical fats, offering a unique sensory biscuit quality, with
    a crunchy bite, no fatbloom and no discoloration over time
  • Cargill (USA) for Bright White Chocolate to replace regular, yellowish-white
    chocolate while keeping the regular ingredients’ list the same as for normal
    white chocolate

Sustainability Innovation Award

  • AAK (Sweden) for enabling chocolate to make deforestation-free claims with
    ILLEXAO SC 70, which is a plant-based ingredient for chocolate and
  • Fonterra Cooperative Group/NZMP (New Zealand) for acting on climate
    change today through carbon zero capability with its recently launched first
    carbonzero certified ingredient – Organic Butter

Julien Bonvallet, Brand Director Informa Markets, concluded: “What we can clearly see is that for many companies, innovation and further development continue even in the current climate, which is by no means an easy task. And the results are impressive: With their solutions, the shortlisted companies are all making an important contribution to the issues and demands that are driving the industry.”


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Media contact
Roshini Bains,
Editor, International Confectionery

Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922

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