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Introducing SousZen

See how Xinova partners with PepsiCo and Innit to launch the new Seattle restaurant tech startup, SousZen, that aims to digitize ‘back of house’.

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Innovation Opportunities

Seeking innovative solutions for:

Innovation partnership produces groundbreaking results on behalf of Meat and Livestock Australia, MLA, a forward-thinking advocate for safe, efficient and humane meat production.

“When we started the relationship, we wanted to test it to see if it would work, so we did a range of projects with them…moving into issues that we think will help position the industry in the global marketplace. The open innovation model provides us with access to a large array of potential solution providers without having to find those people individually.

– Christine Pitt, ‎General Manager, MLA


In Australia’s $13 billion red meat industry, more than $500 million worth of meat yield is lost each year due to animal sickness, stress and other issues. With the global processed meat market expected to reach $924 billion by 2020, there is a critical need for innovative solutions to minimize losses.

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) is a repeat customer who has partnered with Xinova several times to develop innovations to address on-farm, animal health and food packaging challenges. In June 2013, they launched a significant effort to find new ways to increase meat yield.


It’s not easy for farmers to monitor the health of large herds of animals. Cows and sheep don’t tend to present visible signs of stress, fever, or pregnancy, and the cost of large-scale examinations is clearly prohibitive. 

As always in our R&D innovation process, the first step was to fully understand and clearly articulate the challenge at hand. Given the scale and complexity of managing large populations of live animals, the solution had to be inexpensive, durable and, of course, effective in identifying issues that impact livestock production.

These and other detailed requirements were used to develop and publicize a Request for Invention (RFI).


From just one RFI, Xinova’s network of 12,000 innovators yielded over 100 relevant inventions, which we then narrowed to 20 of the most promising candidates for evaluation with MLA.

This screening and refinement is a hallmark of Xinova’s process, enabling clients to focus on the ideas with the greatest potential to satisfy their needs and goals.

The chosen solution was an elegantly simple “smart tattoo” concept submitted by a Seattle-based research lab. It is a non-invasive biosensor comprised of bio-reactive inks that change color in the presence of certain hormones or conditions in the animal. This solution has the potential to greatly reduce the need for labor-intensive testing by enabling visible, real-time detection and monitoring of stress, temperature spikes, pregnancy and mastitis.

Once fully developed, this technology will allow ranchers can take timely action to improve quality, yield and resource management.


This technology has enormous potential for increasing meat yield and production efficiency worldwide. Once fully developed, the “smart tattoo” is likely to have panels for different health markers, including stress and heat levels, and may even have future implications for human health monitoring.

Xinova is partnering with MLA and the inventor in a robust co-commercialization effort to finalize IP protection and cultivate licensing opportunities in all countries that produce red meat. 

Animal trials are scheduled for 2017.

What’s your biggest R&D challenge? 

Xinova engages with companies of all sizes to solve unique and tough problems.

Learn how we engage by clicking through the stories below. 

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We are always seeking new problems to solve, as well as innovators and entrepreneurs to help us solve them. Let’s work together to create the future.

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