ISRAEL – Mars Incorporated has partnered with Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), an Israel based venture capital fund to enhance innovation focused on food, wellness, agriculture and nutrition.

The collaboration will see the partners work with leading academic research institutions with a goal to promote foodtech solutions in Israel.

The partnership involves a research and development agreement pursuing innovative tech solutions for the challenges facing the global food production system.

Mars will support Israeli start-ups and the formation of companies, and will work together with leading Israeli academic institutions, such as the Hebrew University, the Weizmann Institute, the Technion, Migall and Tel Hai College, among others, to further Foodtech innovations.

Through the Mars Edge and the Mars Advanced Research Institute, the company will explore converging fields of food, health and technology fuelling the next generation of agriculture and nutrition.

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.

“Israel has been a case study for how innovation can change a country and transform the world,” said JVP Founder and Executive Chairman 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.

“And by partnering with Mars, one of the world’s most iconic brands at the forefront of innovation, we are confident in Israel’s ability to be the food tech leader of the future.”

Mars reiterates that the collaboration has the potential to unlock opportunities in the emerging space of personalized nutrition.

The investment comes after Mars food-focussed Seeds of Change accelerator earlier this year.

The programme focuses on world flavours, plant-based foods, easy meal solutions and responsible foods, also gives start-ups access to a panel of industry expert mentors.

“Mars is passionate about leveraging leading science and technology to innovate.

“Our ambition is to provide people around the world with consumer centric products, services and experiences,” said Jean-Christophe Flatin, President of Innovation, Science, Technology & Mars Edge at Mars.

“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.”