Finland’s foodtech sector has developed in recent years on the back of larger funding rounds and a strong innovation ecosystem

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A study published by Tesi (officially Finnish Industry Investment Ltd) reveals that funding in the Finnish foodtech sector has increased, with international investors also joining funding rounds. A robust innovation ecosystem supports the development of the industry and the commercialisation of research.

The first-ever study of Finnish foodtech startups and growth companies indicates that the sector comprises a diverse range of companies representing various stages of the food production value chain. The majority of companies focus on agricultural technology (AgTech), at the beginning of the food value chain, and on the development of new food products and ingredients (Next-Gen Food). Predominant in these categories are companies offering plant-based products, and cellular agriculture companies. Many of these companies are research-based.

Funding for the sector has grown robustly since 2015. Excluding the hundreds of millions of euros in funding raised by Wolt and Relex, which operate at the end of the food value chain, foodtech companies have raised approximately €270 million in investments between 2015 and 2022. If Wolt’s and Relex’s funding rounds are included, the total amount raised reaches 1.6 billion euros. Between 2015 and 2022, altogether 80 investments were made in 47 different companies, with a median investment size of just under two million euros.

While Wolt and Relex account for most of the funding, other larger rounds have also been raised. The number of rounds exceeding ten million euros has tripled in the past couple of years.

“The increase in the larger funding rounds of recent years, needed for scaling both business operations and production, indicates that also Finnish companies, such as enifer and OnegoBio, are addressing the huge global challenges of food production,” points out Jan-Patrick Haikkola, Investment Manager at Tesi.

” Finland has long-tradition in innovative food technologies. For example, mycoprotein PEKILO used by Enifer was originally developed in Finland back in the 1970s,” Haikkola adds.

During the first half of 2023, the number of investment rounds declined and the volumes of funding raised shrank. This decline in investment volumes aligns with the overall trend in the funding of startups and growth companies caused by the challenging macroeconomic climate.

Sustainable food production and food technology are of definite interest to investors. Many Finnish funds have invested in foodtech, and in 2020 Nordic FoodTech VC was founded as the first venture capital fund in the Nordic region focused exclusively on food technology,” says Keith Bonnici, Investment Director at Tesi.

Some international investors are active in the market as well. Prominent Finnish companies in the food industry, such as Valio and Fazer, have also been actively involved in new food technology products through innovation and investments.

Sustainable food production in Finland is supported by a strong innovation ecosystem, including several universities, research centres, and business accelerators, such as VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) and the University of Helsinki’s Viikki Food Design Factory.

“In Finland, the building of new innovations receives strong support to complement it. VTT is involved in building trailblazing cellular agriculture companies such as Solar Foods and OnegoBio, which have strong patentable technology. Viikki Food Design Factory, on the other hand, accelerates business activities originating from the university. The ecosystem generates dozens of new teams every year, with the best evolving into internationally significant companies,” concludes Bonnici.

The survey covers a total of 84 Finnish foodtech startups and growth companies identified by Tesi experts from various databases. Large corporations and subsidiaries of international companies are excluded from the survey.

More about the study:

Keith Bonnici, Investment Director
+358 40 1799 584

Jan-Patrick Haikkola, Investment Manager
+358 40 964 4527


Saara Vettenranta, Communications Manager
+358 40 723 3516

Tesi (officially Finnish Industry Investment Ltd) is a state-owned, market-driven investment company that invests in venture capital and private equity funds and directly in Finnish startups and growth companies. | X (Twitter) | LinkedIn | Newsletter