Australian biotech company ProAgni has been shortlisted for the 2020 Future Food Asia Award, beating out dozens of other international agtech startups vying for the USD100,000 prize.
Announcing the shortlist, jury member Isabelle Decitre said: “The current state of our world has cast light on the prominent role of agriculture and food innovation, and stakes in the Asia-Pacific are higher than ever. We are glad to broaden the reach of regional agripreuners and influence an even wider community of stakeholders.”
Finalists will present their innovations to the jury as well as investors, industry leaders and domain experts in September, via Zoom instead of in Singapore as originally planned due to coronavirus travel restrictions.
ProAgni was recognised for its ProTect range of cattle and sheep feed supplements that not only maintain animal health but show that significant improvements in daily gain and feed conversion are achievable without the use of antibiotics to promote growth.
ProAgni is also developing probiotics that will significantly improve the efficiency of meat production (using less water and feed), reduce transition times of grass to grain from weeks to days, and potentially cut livestock emissions by mimicking the biology of the kangaroo gut.
ProAgni CEO, Lachlan Campbell said: “Being shortlisted is not only acknowledgement for Australian agricultural science and innovation, it is important recognition of the looming crisis surrounding antimicrobial resistance and agriculture’s contribution to that crisis.
“Up to 80 percent of all antibiotics used around the world are fed to animals and the resulting untreatable ‘superbugs’, which the World Health Organisation describes as an invisible pandemic, are predicted to be a bigger global killer than cancer by 2050.
“We are really proud to be showcasing Australian science on the global innovation stage and playing our part in addressing the most critical health and environmental issues of our time.”
ProAgni is one of just two Australian finalists with others from the United States, China, India, Indonesia, South Korea, Israel and Singapore. The biotech pioneer also won gold for agricultural innovation at this year’s Edison Awards, has been a winner of the Beef Australia Pitch in the Paddock and a finalist in MLA’s Producer Innovation Awards.