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Innovative businesses are exploring global aquaculture potential through a new launchpad programme.

Five innovative organisations from New Zealand have been selected to accelerate their growth in global aquaculture, including attendance at the world’s biggest aquaculture trade show, through a launchpad programme delivered by Hatch Innovation Services in partnership with NZTE.

The launchpad is designed to empower New Zealand companies with top-quality coaching and networking to help them scale up and maximise their potential in the global aquaculture market.

The five confirmed participants in the launchpad programme are:

•           Aqua Mould Systems NZ Limited –   

•           FoodCap International Limited –

•           The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd –

•           Riverwatch –

•           Whiore Enterprises Limited –


The final cohort was chosen after an open call for applications which closed on 22 April, with applicants assessed jointly by Hatch and NZTE.

The cohort will now join an intensive market entry programme of mentorship, tailored market training and support over coming months, delivered online by Hatch, NZTE and a variety of international aquaculture expert

Tanja Hoel, Director of Hatch Innovation Services, says the quality of applications is testament to the potential of New Zealand innovation in the global aquaculture industry.

“I am impressed by the level of innovation we have seen from companies applying to the programme,” says Hoel. “I had the great pleasure to visit New Zealand late last year, meeting with several companies and innovation players, and I’m really excited to be working with these companies over the coming weeks to bring forward new tech solutions to support the sustainable development of the aquaculture industry.”

Graeme Solloway, Agritech Partnerships Lead for NZTE, also welcomed the announcement of the final launchpad cohort.

“The cohort for this programme gives a sense of the range of New Zealand agritech expertise and innovation that can be applied to challenges in specific industries like aquaculture,” says Solloway. “The launchpad programme is a great opportunity for these organisations, and as a group they also represent the diversity of our agritech sector and its potential for growth in New Zealand and internationally.”

Cohort participants will also travel to the world’s largest aquaculture trade show, AquaNor 2023,  to be held in Trondheim, Norway from 22-24 August. Attending the show will offer participants a chance to engage directly with elite companies and organisations across the global aquaculture industry.

Interest is also being sought in a wider New Zealand delegation to AquaNor, to support the cohort group and explore partnership opportunities for New Zealand businesses, researchers and organisations involved in aquaculture.

The Global innovation launchpad for New Zealand aquaculture forms part of NZTE’s work in support of the Agritech Industry Transformation Plan (ITP), which aims to grow the agritech sector towards contributing $8 billion to the New Zealand economy by 2030.

Government support for the Agritech ITP is led by the Ministry for Primary Industries, with support from MPI, NZTE and Callaghan Innovation, working alongside key industry body AgriTech New Zealand.

The launchpad programme also dovetails with the New Zealand Government’s Aquaculture Strategy, which includes actions to promote investment in innovation and to accelerate the development of new technologies that support sustainability and productivity in aquaculture.

Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


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