Radicle, a $15 million agricultural technology accelerator, is opening in Jerusalem as a program of global crowdfunding VC OurCrowd, in partnership with Finistere Ventures, Cloud Break Advisors and an alliance of top agricultural industry leaders including Bayer and DuPont.
In botany, “radicle” refers to the first part of a seedling to emerge from a planted seed.
Radicle aims to reduce the time it takes for startups to develop, market and commercialize new ag-tech products that have the potential to meet global farming challenges in productivity, sustainability and quality.
Several companies in OurCrowd’s existing portfolio are in ag-tech, including EdenShield, a non-toxic chemical application that protects crops from pest damage; and CropX, a software-driven smart irrigation system.
“DuPont Pioneer continually scouts the innovation frontier for novel ways to improve agricultural productivity and seeks to collaborate with those on the cutting edge of science, even at the earliest stages of technology development,” said Neal Gutterson, vice president for R&D at DuPont Pioneer. “Radicle’s virtual accelerator operating model and investing approach is expected to help Pioneer achieve these objectives.”
Radicle maintains a physical presence in core markets including Israel, San Diego, Palo Alto, Research Triangle Park and the US Midwest. Companies accepted into the accelerator will get advisory services and strategic mentorship, access to industry leaders and connections with universities as well as public and private research institutes.
Israel has several existing ag-tech incubators and accelerators, such as Trendlines Agtech, and venture funds such as GreenSoil Investments Group.