Mars, Incorporated, the US multinational manufacturer of food and snack products such as M&M’s, Snickers, and Skittles, has entered a partnership agreement with Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP) to pursue innovative food tech solutions in Israel, the companies announced on Wednesday.
According to the agreement, Mars will back relevant existing Israeli startups and support the formation of new ones, as well as work together with leading Israeli academic institutions, such as the Hebrew University, the Weizmann Institute, and the Technion, to further innovations.
“The partnership will tackle major global sustainability issues by providing scalable solutions to the challenges of feeding humanity in a way that preserves and protects the environment. It has the potential to unlock opportunities in the emerging space of personalized nutrition,” JVP said in a statement.
Mars Edge, the company’s entrepreneurial segment, and the Mars Advanced Research Institute will explore the converging fields of food, health and technology fueling the next generation of agriculture and nutrition, JVP said.
The partnership is part of a JVP initiative to transform northern Israel into a global food tech hub.
“Israel has been a case study for how innovation can change a country and transform the world,” said JVP founder and executive chairman Dr. Erel Margalit. “After building global companies and solutions in cybersecurity, AI and big data, Israel has set its sights on food as the next frontier. As food and nutrition needs change around the world, we need to create more nutritious, accessible and sustainable food solutions.”
Jean-Christophe Flatin, the president of innovation, science, and technology at Mars Edge said the company’s ambition was “to provide people around the world with consumer-centric products, services and experiences.”
“One example is personalized nutrition solutions that fit an individual’s lifestyle by reconciling the food they want with the nutrition they need. We are clear that we need forward-thinking partnerships and collaborations to do this,” he said,
George Graham, the VP at Mars Advanced Research Institute said: “We are eager to partner with JVP and tap into the innovative ecosystem of the Israeli food, health and technology community. This exciting collaboration will help us access and be part of solutions specific to global challenges in the food system related to ag[ri] tech, nutrition, and food security.”