The companies will jointly support funded European startups with artificial intelligence-based solutions for sustainable food and regenerative agriculture in a three-month accelerator.
Microsoft has partnered with Danone for the latest edition of its AI Factory — an accelerator for funded European startups that have developed and marketed artificial intelligence-based solutions for complex, global challenges.
Following AI Factory for Green Energy (with partner Schneider Electric) and AI Factory for Health (with partner AstraZeneca), this third cohort — AI Factory for Agrifood — will work with startups with AI-based solutions for sustainable food and regenerative agriculture. The incoming class of six startups will take part in the three-month accelerator, and receive joint support from Microsoft and Danone — one of the world’s largest agrifood companies and a leader in advancing regenerative agriculture at scale.
AI Factory, Microsoft's support program for startups specializing in Artificial Intelligence, is organized around five major economic and societal challenges: health, environment / energy, transportation, financial services and agrifood. AI Factory for Agrifood aims to accelerate the digital transformation of each sector by supporting the development of innovations in artificial intelligence and cloud computing. By acting as a co-innovation lab that links startups, researchers and various players in each sector, the AI Factory for Agrifood aims to foster projects serving areas including regenerative agriculture (soil health, animal welfare, support for farmers), sustainable food, waste minimization, and optimization of supply chains.
"At Danone, we believe that artificial intelligence can contribute to the Food Revolution by improving our agricultural systems and our food’s value chains," said Cécile Cabanis, EVP, CFO, IS / IT, Danone Cycles & Procurement. "That’s why we are very happy to launch this program with our partners at Microsoft: In a fundamental area such as food and agriculture, it is essential to encourage collaborative initiatives, knowledge sharing and the emergence of new, more inclusive and more sustainable solutions."
The six selected startups for the AI Factory for Agrifood will be announced on March 5. Learn more about the accelerator here.