Dr. Mikelis Grivins on foraging and the blackmarket for wild foods

Listen again. Foraging exists in a delicate balanace with nature. If we take too much, it can lead to environmental degradation. At the same time, it survives as a cultural tradition and a key way families put food on the table. My guest today is Dr. Mikelis Grivins a researcher at the Baltic Studies Center. In this episode, we discuss the four kinds of foragers commonly seen in Europe, the ethics of foraging, and the black market that exists around wild foods.

  • 4:00 Overview of alternative food systems are important
  • 17:00 4 types of foragers across Europe
  • 20:20 Exploitation, transparency & regulation in the wild food market
  • 25:00 Wild washing

ICA on shifting the Swedish food system

ICA is one of the biggest grocery retailers in Sweden. Every week, around 12 million people pass through their stores. Recognizing the important role they play in the everyday life of Swedes, ICA is intent on supporting the shift to a sustainable food system. A system that supports biodiversity, plant-based, and local foods. They launched ICA Växa, a new unit of the organization, to bring new products to market and connect with the startup community. Today, I speak with Jacqueline Engdahl, the Head of ICA Växa, to hear what exactly their up to. 

  • 6:00 ICA’s vision for the next 100 years
  • 8:50 Jacqueline’s story
  • 19:00 What ICA Växa does
  • 32:00 Different pathways of getting into ICA from pitching the category manager to the store owner or co-branding with ICA’s private label.

Chef Gunnar Karl Gíslason on Iceland's food traditions

Gunnar Karl Gíslason is the founding chef behind Dill, which was the first restaurant in Iceland to receive a Michelin star. He is also the author of North: The New Northern Cuisine of Iceland. In this episode, we trace Iceland’s food traditions through the individuals that are helping to keep them alive

  • 2:15 Rundown of Gunnar’s career and opening a res 
  • 7:30 Defining New Nordic food and the Icelandic kitchen 
  • 16:00 Finding inspiration in old traditions
  • 33:00 The evolution of the Icelandic kitchen 

We also reference this episode with Amass on creating a zero-waste kitchen. As well as Saltverk’s startup story. 

Show your love for the podcast. Support the show for $5 a month here: https://nordicfoodtechpodcast.substack.com/

Delås Farm on regenerative agriculture and REKO rings

In 2017, Camilla and Raymund were trying to get the best food possible to feed their family. Realizing that food is tightly linked with health, they were looking for high-quality, nutrient-dense foods, but actually struggled to find it in Norwegian grocery stores. So, they decided to start growing their own food. This is the story of how they traded city life and taught themselves how to farm according to regenerative principles.

  • 5:00 How Camilly and Raymund started farming
  • 12:20 What regenerative agriculture is and how it works
  • 23:00 Norway’s farming capacity 
  • 27:00 How Reko Rings directly connect consumers and farmers
  • 52:00 Advice for farming and the cost of getting started

Become a contributor. Support the show for $5 a month: https://nordicfoodtechpodcast.substack.com/

Yara's EVP of Farming Solutions Terje Knutsen on green fertilizer, carbon sequestration, and precision agriculture

Yara is the world’s leading producer of nitrate-based fertilizer.  Most fertilizers are produced using fossil fuels. Fertilizer runoff has also been linked to environmental degradation. At the same time, fertilizer plays a critical role in our food system’s productivity. Over half of the world’s population relies on mineral fertilizer to be fed. Yara’s mission is to responsibly feed the world and protect the planet. In this episode, I sit down with Executive Vice President of Farming Solution Terje Knutsen to explore exactly how they are doing that. We cover green fertilizer, the hydrogen economy, soil carbon sequestration, and precision agriculture. 

  • 8:30 The role of fertilizer in crop production
  • 19:30 Green fertilizer and clean ammonia 
  • 26:30 Details of Yara’s investment arm, Yara Growth Ventures
  • 31:30 The Agoro Carbon Alliance and helping farmers to sequester carbon
  • 49:00 AtFarm and other digital solutions for precision agriculture

If you like this episode on corporate innovation, check out this series of podcasts. For more conversations, join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.

Saltverk’s CEO Björn Steinar Jónsson on Icelandic salt production from geothermal energy

The Danish king established salt production in Iceland in the 18th century using geothermal energy. The production stopped a few decades later, but the tradition was not lost forever. In 2011, Björn Steinar Jónsson co-founded Saltverk, re-instating Icelandic salt production in one of the most remote parts of Europe. The result is a delicious, hand-harvested flaky sea salt that tastes like the ocean and is used by many of the best restaurants in the world. Join us we explore Saltverk’s startup journey. 

  • 10:00 Producing salt with geothermal energy
  • 16:00 Selling to restaurants
  • 24:00 Finding product market fit
  • 35:30 How Saltverk self-funded growth 
  • 43:00 Setting up production

Interested in learning more about oceans and the future of food? Check out this series. You’re also invited to join our community on Instagram 

Iceland Ocean Cluster's Founder Thor Sigfusson on using 100% of a fish

Iceland is known for having some of the most productive fisheries in the world. Some even call it the Silicon Valley of white fish. In this episode, Thor Sigfusson, the Founder of The Iceland Ocean Cluster, dives into why Iceland is a leader in seafood processing technology, the innovative ways they are using 100% of a fish, and what the fishing ship of tomorrow will look like. Thor is also the author of The New Fish Wave: How To Ignite the Seafood Industry.

  • 7:00 Low-hanging fruit as an impetus for collaboration
  • 10:30 The history of Fish & Ships in Iceland
  • 19:30 Using 100% of the fish
  • 21:30 How the Iceland Ocean Cluster started
  • 36:30 How the cluster’s model is being applied elsewhere

Interested in learning more about oceans and the future of food? Check out this series of podcasts. You’re also invited to join our community on Instagram 

Seaweed Solutions on the multi-billion market for European seaweed

Jon Funderud the CEO of Seaweed Solutions. Since 2009, they have been a pioneer in building up Europe’s seaweed production, collaborating with players across the value chain to set up and establish growing and cultivation. Seaweed is an incredible raw material. Regenerative, sustainable, and versatile seaweed is being used for animal feeds, food ingredients, biofuels, bio-plastics, and pharmaceuticals. It is estimated that the seaweed market will grow to 9.3 billion euro by 2030, 30% of which could be captured by Europe. This episode is a crash course on seaweed’s potential. We dive into what’s unfolding in Norway and beyond and why seaweed is such a big deal. 

  • 6:30 Seaweed’s many applications 
  • 15:30 The up and coming European market 
  • 22:00 Ways of farming seaweed
  • 31:30 Seaweed Solutions operations 
  • 37:00 Why industry collaborations matter

Interested in learning more about oceans and the future of food? Check out this series of podcasts. Find the full report on Seaweed in Europe here

Electrolux Innovation Hub's Tove Chevalley on designing a future kitchen for sustainable eating

Electrolux was founded in 1901. Today, they offer a full line of kitchen and laundry appliances, inspired by their work in designing professional products for the world’s best chefs. Tove Chevalley is the Head of Electrolux’s Innovation Hub focused on rethinking the way we cook, clean, and take care of our homes. In this episode, we dive into how the Innovation Team co-creates with chefs, teenagers, colleagues, and startups to develop new solutions that facilitate sustainable eating, better clothing care, and wellbeing in the home. 

  • 11:00 Electrolux’s sustainability targets for 2030
  • 18:12 The future kitchen in 10 years
  • 24:00 Defining sustainable eating
  • 29:00 How Electrolux sources innovation
  • 43:30 How the hub facilitates internal innovation

If you’d like this episode on sustainability innovation, check out this conversation with Carlsberg’s Sustainability Manager. You’re also invited to join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.

Tim Wendelboe on biological coffee farming and chasing great taste from seed to cup

Tim Wendelboe runs his own roastery and espresso bar in Oslo, Norway where he imports, roasts and serves high quality coffees. Tim has won multiple international barista competitions and is known for his ability to create great taste. In this episode, we trace Tim’s career starting as a barista, moving into coffee roasting, and then starting his own Farm, Finca el Suelo, in Columbia where he practices biological coffee farming. We also discuss how Tim works closely and transparently with farmers to improve their coffee quality. 

  • 8:30 Positively influencing great taste in coffee
  • 15:30 The Tim Wendelboe coffee shop experience
  • 18:00 How Tim works with farmers around the world 
  • 27:30 Adventures in biological coffee farming in Columbia
  • 43:20 Sustainability and transparency 

If you like this episode, check out this podcast with the Coffee Collective’s Founder. We further explore what creates great taste, transparency, and sustainability from another Nordic point of view. For more conversations, join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.