Top 10 Foodtech Companies In The Run Up To Christmas

Lily Ruaah, 21 december 2023

Are you stuck for a present idea this Christmas? You might think it’s a cop-out (financially) to bake some cookies or stick a bottle of red in a fancy bag.

In 2017, Angela Harnett said that Britain isn’t a ‘foodie nation’, because British food culture is all about money. Stating, ‘people who have money can afford good food in this country.’ We think that’s not entirely true—you can buy some fantastic, unique, and inexpensive gifts for the food lover in your life. As well as make some great meals (including a delicious roast) without breaking the bank.

We decided to take a look at some of the top foodtech companies in the run up to Christmas, and see what new and exciting things are coming out. This list might also inspire some great, cost-friendly gift ideas. You’re welcome!

What is foodtech?

Foodtech simply means ‘Food Technology’—a term that encompasses the use of technology to enhance or revolutionise the food industry. This can include various aspects such as the production, processing, distribution, and consumption of food.

Areas of foodtech often cover:

Foodtech is a rapidly evolving field, driven by increasing consumer demand for convenience, sustainability, and innovation in food production and consumption. It holds the promise of addressing major global challenges such as food security, climate change, and health.

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How have we seen foodtech changing over the past five years?

In the UK, the foodtech industry has witnessed significant and consistent growth since 2018.

In fact, in 2018 there were 62 active foodtech companies, compared to today where there are 94. In addition, there was a big spike in the total amount raised by foodtech companies at the beginning of 2022. This could be due to:


We used a unique methodology to select our top 10 high-growth foodtech companies.

We’ve ranked private foodtech companies on the amount of equity raised in total. These businesses are all headquartered in the UK. The data was collected, and accurate up until 13 December 2023.

Top 10 foodtech companies in the UK

We’ve ordered our companies from 10 to one.


Better Origin

Total amount raised: £15.3m
Established: 2005
Location: East of England, UK

Better Origin came in at number ten on our list. This company turns food waste into animal feed. Within the Better Origin systems, food waste is consumed by black soldier fly larvae, which then develop into nutrient-dense insect products.

It featured on three high-growth lists: twice on the FoodTech 500 in 2020 and 2021, and on the 21toWatch in 2021. It also participated in four accelerators: MassChallengeUK, Bio-start, Serious Impact Cambridge, and Accelerate Star. Since its establishment in 2015, it’s raised £15.3m in five fundraisings, and received six grants.

While it might not help you think of a holiday gift, the company is doing innovative work to push towards a greener future for the UK—they also hit four of our ESG signals.



Total amount raised: £15.4m
Established: 2014
Location: London, UK

NOTPLA has designed edible food containers, and other products, which are made of seaweed. NOTPLA has put together a team of experts in material science, engineering, biology, and bio-design to create single-use packaging that does not outlast its contents.

The company has attended three accelerator programs: Climate-KIC, Shott Scale Up, and Grow London Global. It’s also featured on the Tällt Disrupt 100, and the FoodTech 500. It raised a total of £15.4m over four fundraisings, and received £2.94m in 13 grants.

While currently aimed at businesses, it probably won’t be long until you see NOTPLA made products in a shop near you—so keep an eye out.


Better Dairy

Total amount raised: £18m
Established: 2019
Location: London, UK

Better Dairy is developing a non-dairy alternative using yeast fermentation, from cheese to ice cream, chocolate, and more. Better Dairy has been featured in The Financial Times, The Times, and spoken about on the BBC and BBC Radio Four.

The company has raised £18m (over $20m) since 2019, and received one grant. It featured on the FoodTech 500 in 2020 and 2021. It attended the Entrepreneur First accelerator program in 2019.

Currently, the product is still in production, but hopefully, it’ll make a great gift for a vegan or lactose-intolerant friend (or anyone), in 2024.


Roslin Technologies

Total amount raised: £24m
Established: 2016
Location: East of Scotland, UK

Roslin Technologies employs biotechnology to create sustainable food products, addressing challenges related to food security, animal health, and environmental change. The company’s mission is to advance disruptive biotechnologies to improve protein production.

This academic spinout, from the University of Edinburgh, has secured £24m since 2016. It featured on the FoodTech 500 in 2020 and 2021. It secured £24m over seven fundraisings, and received four grants—totalling £1.32m.


Vertical Future

Total amount raised: £25.8m
Established: 2016
Location: London, UK

Vertical Future specialises in vertical farming. It is a global vertical farming technology and data company that designs, manufactures, and builds advanced vertical farms, encompassing proprietary hardware and software.

Vertical Farming featured on the FoodTech 500 three years running, from 2019-2021. It also attended the Mayor’s International Business Programme. The company raised £25.8m since 2016, and has received £778k in grants.
Part of your Christmas meal, whether you’re having a roast or an Indian feast, could have been grown on a vertical farm just like the ones Vertical Future develops.



Total amount raised: £28.1m
Established: 2018
Location: East of England, UK

Uncommon is a company that specialises in the production of plant-based meat alternatives, with a specific focus on replicating pork products. Their range of products is designed to offer a sustainable and ethical choice for consumers looking for alternatives to traditional meat.

It attended the Entrepreneur Accelerator in 2019, and featured on the FoodTech 500 high-growth list. Since its creation in 2018, the company has secured £28.1m in equity fundraising. It’s also received a grant for £1.03m.

There’s no solid news of when they plan to release their products yet, but sign up to their newsletter to be the first to know.



Total amount raised: £32.3m
Established: 2013
Location: London, UK

Winnow designs technology to track and monitor food waste within the hospitality industry. Winnow helps restaurants cut down on food waste, and ultimately save money. Kitchen staff are backed by specialised operational teams who share knowledge and best practices in the local language, ensuring smooth and effective communication.

It attended five accelerators: the Mayor’s International Business Programme twice, R/GA IoT Venture Studio, Upscale, and Seedcamp. It’s also featured on several high-growth lists including Start-Up 101, and NatWest SE100. Winnow has secured seven fundraisings, totalling £32.2m.



Total amount raised: £46.6m
Established: 2015
Location: London, UK

OLIO is an app where restaurants and individuals can list unwanted food items for others to take. This can be anything from basic household items to restaurant-made food that didn’t sell—and it’s all free of charge.

OLIO has secured £46.6m from five fundraisings. It’s featured on five high-growth lists: the FoodTech 500 twice, Start-Up 101, and London Tech50 twice. It attended three accelerators: Unreasonable Impact UK & Europe, Upscale, and the Mayor’s International Business Programme.

OLIO could be a great way to find totally free Christmas gifts this year. Download the app, and see what’s available in your area.



Total amount raised: £52.3m
Established: 2012
Location: London, UK

REKKI creates mobile app software that facilitates communication between restaurants and their suppliers.

REKKI is changing the process of ingredient procurement for restaurants. This innovative app serves as a comprehensive platform, consolidating all aspects of the ordering process into a single, user-friendly interface. With REKKI, restaurants can seamlessly manage their relationships with multiple suppliers, placing and tracking orders with ease.

Since launching in 2012, the company has raised £52.3m in five fundraisings.



Total amount raised: £321m
Established: 2011
Location: London, UK

Coming in at number one is Gousto. Gousto is a meal-box delivery service. It offers exact measurement recipes delivered to your home. It’s fast becoming a popular option, alongside Hello Fresh and Green Chef, among others.

Gousto has raised a staggering £321m since 2012, over 14 fundraisings. It’s been featured on 13 high-growth lists, most recently the FT 1000 and Alantra Food & Beverage Fast 50 in 2022. It also took part in the Future Fifty accelerator program.

Gousto could make a great long-term gift for someone who finds it difficult to get out to the supermarket, or someone who’s trying to be more conscious about their diet.

Gift ideas

Still searching for the perfect gift? Here are a few of our favourites for the festive season.

Tonkotsu’s Chilli Oil will set you back just £5.95 for the regular, or £17.50 for the set. It’s a great gift for all the chilli-heads out there, or a nice stocking filler.

Doughnut Time offers festive doughnut boxes, including a DIY (decorate your own) doughnut box—perfect for families or your creative friends.

For your pasta-lover friends, The Cornwall Pasta Company has a range of pasta made from different ingredients, from red wine pasta to squid ink. Bags of pasta cost £8 and come in a variety of colours and tastes.

Coffee is always a great gift idea. Union offers a selection of Christmas coffee options. They offer gift cards, Christmas selection boxes, and even a coffee subscription.


Whether you’re celebrating the holidays this year or not, these foodtech companies have shown great innovation, and continue to bring the UK to the forefront of modern technology. Their advancements in sustainable practices, efficiency in food production, and embracing digital transformations in the food industry are only enhancing the consumer experience. As well as addressing critical global issues like food security and environmental sustainability.

As we move forward, the ongoing success and creativity of these companies promise to keep the UK as a leading player in the global foodtech landscape, shaping the future of how we produce, distribute, and consume food.

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