Web Summit: 5 trends in food technology

Web Summit: 5 trends in food technology

Web Summit is a tech conference, held annually since 2009. Imagine 53,000 people from over 160 countries together during 3 days. 600 speakers in 21 stages and more than 1500 startups, in Lisbon. I was there checking everything closely and brought to you the 5 biggest trends in food technology.

During the event the startups competed for the prize for best pitch. The winner was the Danish Kubo which produces robots that teach children programming codes. Among the speakers there were entrepreneurs as the CEO of Tinder, the football players (and entrepreneurs) Ronaldinho and Luis Figo, among others. But it is a mistake to think that the future is made only of technology, according to Paddy Cosgrave, creator of the Web Summit, “it is a mistake to think that all technology is good.” It must add value, make a positive impact in people’s lives, on society and the planet.

 But let’s get down to it, what Web Summit can add to the food world?


Glocal is a portmanteau of the words global + local. The trend is to have global reach, but acting locally (want to see more vocabulary like this? Take a look at our Innovation Dictionary here!) and this was evident in startups Buyme4you, a marketplace for food and local crafts; Food Stamp, a platform for you to know the best places to eat in your city and Casioli, a platform for amateur cooks sell their products.
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2- Focus on experiences

According to a study done during 20 years at Cornell University, United States, spending money on experiences brings more happiness than spending on goods. No matter what is the object, you will soon get used to it and lose satisfaction, while the experiences are reminded for a long time.

The experiences we live become part of our identity and some companies are already adapting to this new reality. This is the case of the Brazilian Rent a Local Friend, in which you can “hire” a local inhabitant to present the city, sightseeing and eating with you when you are traveling (with the advantage that the guidance is paid, i.e. you can earn some extra money while making new friends!). Look and Cook is a platform in which you learn to cook with the natives of the desired specialty region.

3- Robots

Robots are everywhere, from coffee machines to customer service. We’ve talked about them also here and here but it never too much to reinforce.

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Robot that serves coffee, from the Portuguese Delta Cafes

4- Stop food waste

According to FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization), about 30% of the food grown in the world goes to the trash sometime between the crop and the end consumer. The Italian startup Foody is a network against the waste. It maps the establishments near you that sell products close to expire date at a discount and also indicates what are the products, price and quantity available. A good idea for anyone who wants to save money, that is, all of us!

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5- Automation

Automate is the word: software, reports, data processing and even your housework, is all automatic and in real time. Food to Do automates your menu planning, offers weekly menus tailored for you and up to 30 different options of diets. Contains step-by-step instructions for cooking and grocery shopping list.

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The Portuguese A Little Chef Inside is an authomatic soup machine for company kitchens and offices, you may simply select the option on the screen and receive a hot cup of soup.

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What about you, how can you use these trends in your business or apply it in your life? Tell me in the comments!

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