Foodvalley Champions 2020 announced

De Nieuwe Melkboer (The New Milkman), In Ovo and Grünten have been named Foodvalley Champions 2020. De Nieuwe Melkboer stood out, in the Protein Shift category, with their plant-based milk from locally-grown soy. In Ovo distinguished themselves within Circular Agrifood with a method for in-the-egg sex determination of chicks. With their ‘Veggie Oats’, Grünten came out on top in the Food & Health category. All three winners have innovation in their genes, according to the jury. The prizes were awarded during the Foodvalley Summits on 13 October.

Protein Shift: De Nieuwe Melkboer (The New Milkman)

“Bart and Tom Grobben, ‘plant-based -milk’ makers as they call themselves, really stand out in this field. They make farming future-proof in a groundbreaking way,” says the jury about De Nieuwe Melkboer, Foodvalley Champion in the Protein Shift category. With their plant-based dairy variations, from locally-grown proteins such as soy, co-created with local processing partners, they are shaping two transitions at the same time: accelerating the shift to a more plant-based diet and shortening the chain. “We are really pleased to have won this award. It will make it much easier to find and work with parties that, like us, want to produce vegetable dairy with proteins from locally grown crops,” say the two young entrepreneurs. Early November they will launch their first plant-based dairy product.

Circular Agrifood: In Ovo

“In Ovo’s technical innovation anticipates the imminent ban on one-day male-chick culling by 2022 in, amongst others, Germany. With this method, the current chain will be transformed, a new processing system will be deployed and a major social impact will be realized,” was the verdict of the jury on this winner in the Circular Agrifood category. In Ovo developed a device with which the sex of chickens in the egg can be determined quickly and reliably. Everything in the company is focused on making production systems animal friendly and sustainable. Wil Stutterheim, Founder and Director of In Ovo: “This award has come at just the right time for us. This year we will take our technology to the market and I’m certain the Foodvalley network will be of tremendous help.”

Food & Health: Grünten

Consumers do not eat enough vegetables. Adding an extra ‘vegetable’ moment to breakfast increases consumption significantly, with all the health benefits that go with eating more greens. However, no one is waiting for a piece of broccoli in the morning. When vegetables taste like pie, it becomes a different story. “Grünten has managed to create a new moment for eating vegetables,” says the jury about the winner in the Food & Health category. Their breakfast product ‘Veggie OATS’, with flavors inspired on pie, provides 25% of the daily-recommended vegetable intake. “This award will be our breakthrough into the market,” says Berend Eberson, founder of Grünten. “Through Foodvalley we can now work together with the right parties: those who can help us extend the shelf life of our product. Currently it’s ten days, but we plan to have a shelf life of over three weeks – and that place on the shelf where consumers can find us.”

Foodvalley Champions prize

Foodvalley Champions is the successor to the prestigious Foodvalley Award. The prize is presented every two years to the three most innovative companies in the categories of the Protein Shift, Circular Agrifood and Food & Health. Participants are judged on (1) the innovative character of their company and (2) the impact and innovative character of their recent innovation(s). The prize includes a promotional video about their winning innovation, international profiling by Foodvalley NL and a one-year Foodvalley membership.


Since 2004, Foodvalley NL has been building and strengthening the Foodvalley ecosystem, an international network of companies working together on the transition to a sustainable food system. Foodvalley NL sets the agenda, develops programs, initiates, supports, challenges and connects. Through its years of experience, Foodvalley NL is able to identify breakthrough solutions and innovations at an early stage and to provide the contacts, knowledge and resources to ensure success, scale and impact. Innovation themes: Circular Agrifood; Food & Health; Protein Shift, supported by: Smart & Digital Technology.

Read more about all nine nominees.

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