Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge: Call for innovative solutions in the agri-food tech space

The Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge is seeking innovators driven by a passion for solving challenges in the agri-food sector by utilizing or conserving agrobiodiversity.

As part of the 2nd International Agrobiodiversity Congress, November 15-18, 2021, in Rome, the Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge will recognize new products, services, and best practices that can help farmers, consumers, and food companies increase production effectiveness, competitiveness, and resilience while conserving agrobiodiversity.

In an open innovation approach, the Innovation Challenge aims to:

  • Connect different actors motivated to improve global and community-based food systems

  • Attract and support innovators to scale up their solutions through a long-term research and development collaboration with CGIAR and its partners

  • Identify innovators who could help advance research by sharing ideas and solutions

Disruptive innovators will have an opportunity to pitch their solutions to transform food systems through the use and conservation of agrobiodiversity and to deliver on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The challenge will highlight leading innovations that are helping to use, conserve, and consume agrobiodiversity in ways that are better for people and for the environment.

Solutions should have the potential to:

  • Boost food production, consumption, and nutritional security

  • Promote women’s engagement, entrepreneurship, as well as youth-led exercises

  • Promote Public-Private-Partnerships to link formal and informal sectors for sustainable intensification leading to livelihood and environmental benefits

  • Accelerate rural adoption using mobile applications that boost nature-based solutions to improve sustainability, profits for growers, and consumer health

  • Leverage technological innovations with biodiversity-sensitive potential for producers, their communities, and consumers

  • Close the gap between breeding outcomes and commercial delivery of quality certified seeds to farmers

Prizes and benefits:

In addition to increased visibility, recognition, and networking opportunities with leading industry players, investors, and scientific experts, 10 shortlisted candidates will receive a place on the Congress website and an invitation to participate in the Virtual Pitch Day Competition on Monday, November 15th.

Following the Pitch Day Competition, selected winners will be awarded cash prizes, mentoring and training, partnerships, scientific and technology guidance, or tuition for a master’s program.

The competition is open to individual founders, private companies, and institutions. Learn more.

Deadline for applications: 30 September 2021.

For further information, please contact

The Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge is an initiative organized with the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in partnership with CIHEAM Bari, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) , Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) BiP, Rockstart, The Lexicon and the Accelerate for Impact Platform (A4IP).

Apply now!

For further information, terms & conditions, visit the 2nd International Agrobiodiversity Congress website.