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NEWS
ISRAELI SCIENTISTS BEHIND SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH IN PROTEIN MAPPING

09/2014
CONTINUED SPIKES IN ISRAELI HI-TECH VC INVESTMENTS IN Q2

09/2014
YAHOO SNAPS UP SECOND ISRAELI START-UP

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ISRAELI ELMINDA GETS FDA APPROVAL FOR BRAIN MAPPING TECHNOLOGY

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ISRAEL ON COURSE FOR RECORD M&A YEAR

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ISRAELI GETTAXI APP TAKES ITS PRODUCT TO NYC

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3 ISRAELI UNIVERSITIES IN GLOBAL TOP 50 FOR ALUMNI ENTREPREURSHIP

09/2014
20% SPIKE IN ISRAELI TTO INVENTIONS

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STATISTICS SHOW: MULTINATIONALS CENTRAL TO ISRAEL'S BUSINESS R&D

08/2014
YAHOO ACQUIRES ISRAELI STREAMING TECHNOLOGY COMPANY, RAYV

08/2014
JAPAN & ISRAEL DEEPEN R&D TIES

08/2014
U.S. TECH GIANT SNATCHES ISRAELI WILOCITY

08/2014
Q2 SEES SPIKE IN FUNDRAISING ROUNDS FOR ISRAELI STARTUPS

08/2014
ISRAEL'S NASDAQ PRESENCE GROWS

08/2014
ISRAELI GAMING DELEGATION TAKES NORTH AMERICAN ROAD TRIP

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NEW INCENTIVES TO ENCOURAGE INVESTMENT IN EARLY-STAGE START-UPS

08/2014
EVENTS
AGRO-TECHNOLOGY

Agritech in Israel

Smart Agriculture Meets High-tech Innovation


For 64 years, Israel has been at the forefront of originating and utilizing new forms of farming. Today, its agricultural community benefits from synergies with the local high-tech sector, resulting in a truly exciting array of innovative agricultural developments. Such innovations make creative use of developments like satellite imagery, information technology, and geospatial tools, allowing both large and small-scale farmers to better track harvests and manage resources to promote long-term sustainability. In addition, as a result of Israels continuous need to overcome a scarcity of natural resources, it has emerged as a worldwide leader in the efficient use of water, land and human capital. These innovations and methods are currently attracting the attention of investors the world over.


Israels Agritech Achievements

Irrigation: Innovative technologies and accessories such as drip irrigation, automatic valves and controllers, automatic filtration, low discharge sprayers, use of low saline content water, mini-sprinklers, compensated drippers and sprinklers.

Produce:

  • Produce of better quality and with a longer shelf life has been developed by Israeli agronomists. In 1973, two Israeli scientists developed a variety of cherry tomato with slower ripening in a hot climate than ordinary tomatoes.
  • The growing awareness of the importance of ecologically-oriented agriculture has led to the development of fruit grown with minimal use of chemicals to avoid interfering with the ecosystem or harming the environment. Production is in line with the quality assurance requirements of the European Union, in compliance with EurepGap 2000 principles, ISO standards and crop management protocols.
  • Israel has become known for its advanced pomegranate production, with locally developed varieties reaching an average yield of 25-35 tons per hectare and resulting in improved quality and taste.
  • Greenhouse systems, including specialized plastic films and heating, ventilation and structure systems, enable Israeli farmers to grow more than three million roses per hectare per season and an average of 300 tons of tomatoes per hectare per season, four times the yields of open fields.
  • Israel is one of the world's leading fresh citrus producers and exports include oranges, grapefruit, tangerines and the pomelit, a hybrid of a grapefruit and a pomelo, developed in Israel.  Israel is also the worlds second largest producer of loquat (shesek) after Japan.
  • Technological innovations in the Israeli cotton industry, resulting in shorter growing seasons and larger yields, have been emulated worldwide.
  • Flower production in Israel is yet another part of the agricultural sector that uses greenhouses to optimize productivity (i.e. three times as efficient as the traditional production methods).  Nearly 80% of the flower production in Israel is exported, mainly to Europe.

Dairy & Animals:

  • Dairy product and technology exports include advanced and computerized milking and feeding systems, cooling systems which reduce heat stress on cows, embryos for transplant, milk processing equipment, consultancy services, as well as joint international project development.
  • Advances in animal husbandry in Israel include the development of high milk-producing Assaf sheep, a result of the crossbreeding of the improved Israeli Awassi and the German East Friesian breeds and prize-winning Holstein cows with superior milk production capabilities.
  • Local cows produce the highest amounts of milk per animal in the world: up to 10.5 tons a year, 10% more than in the U.S. and almost 50% more than in Germany (Bloomberg News).

Agricultural Equipment (design and manufacturing) & Methods:

  • Mobile celery packing houses.
  • Machinery for digging silage and uniformly mixing feed
  • Poultry equipment such as drinkers, automatic egg collectors, climate control systems and scales for weighing
  • Pomegranate aril (the red part) removal machine and related products which capitalize on all parts of the pomegranate fruit (e.g. anti-oxidants, tannins from the peel etc.)
  • An air-blast sprayer for use in citrus growing areas and vineyards which provides efficient tree cover, flower bulb trans-planters and machinery for packing houses.
  • The growth of new high-yielding, high-quality pathogen-resistant vegetables
  • Advanced methods of climate control in protected growing systems 
  • Application methods for growing crops in regions with unsuitable soil
  • Application of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) methods to a range of vegetable crops
  • Application of post-harvest methods, means and treatment for lengthening shelf life and preventing crop rotting


Breakthroughs by Emerging Companies

In recent years, Israel has seen a steady trend towards successful start-up companies in the field of agro-technology, working on such diverse projects as breeding new crop varieties, sustainable crop-protection and post-harvest technologies, livestock health, feed solutions, aquaculture, soil-less agriculture, precision agriculture and energy production from second-generation agriculture.

  • UniVerve developed a viable, economic and sustainable fossil-fuel substitute in the form of microalgae-oil. Evofuel is engaged in developing seeds of second-generation feedstock for the growing biofuel market.
  • SUBflex designed an innovative Submersible Net Cage System for offshore fish farming, so that fish retain their wild features, resulting in a premium product.
  • Morflora, which was named by Red Herring magazine as one of the top 100 companies in Europe in 2012, created the TraitUP platform, which is utilized to express or silence genes in seeds and plants.
  • Metabolic Robots has developed a new robotic food control kit for poultry houses which controls the frequency of meals and quantity of food according to pre-set categories.
  • CattleSense uses a non-invasive physiology sensor, renewable solar energy and an RF network to provide daily information to cattle growers PC/smartphone.
  • Rosetta Green has generated plants with modified microRNA genes for trait improvement. They have developed genetically modified Arabidopsis, potato and tobacco plants that survive longer periods without water compared to the untreated control.  The company was acquired by Monsanto in 2013.
  • Kaiima uses breakthrough CGM technology to develop new NON-GMO crops with dramatically improved productivity and improved land and water-use efficiencies.

Support from the Government

Approximately $90 million has been invested annually in research and development, $50 million of which is distributed by the Agricultural Research Organization (ARO), the Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor and the Ministry of Agriculture, making Israel a world leader in the allocation of funds for R&D in the agro-technology industry.


Business Highlights

  • In 2012 India-based company Jain irrigation completed their full acquisition of NaanDanJain Irrigation Ltd. from Israel-based Kibbutz Naan.
  • In 2011, Monsanto acquired Israeli company Beelogics, a developer of targeted biological pest and disease control solutions for bees and bee colonies. Beelogics current projects include a product that uses a naturally-occurring process to help protect bee health.
  • In 2010, John Deere & Company bought Beit Hashita Metal Industries Ltd. (BHC), a manufacturer of cotton picker repair parts for all makes of equipment and a supplier of cotton picker row units for other manufacturers.
  • In 2009, Bayer CropScience AG and Israel's Evogene Ltd. signed a three-year agreement focused on increasing rice productivity and yield. Under the agreement, key candidate genes discovered by Evogene for yield enhancement will be introduced into Bayer CropScience's rice R&D pipeline for the development of high yielding hybrid rice.
  • In 2008, Deere & Company bought Israeli irrigation manufacturer Plastro Irrigation Ltd. for $245 million.
     

Last modified: 9/29/2014 pic