£5,000 cash up for grabs in new “Digging for Innovation Challenge” for agri-tech companies


Cirencester-based Agri-tech innovation support organisation Farm491  has launched a new “Digging for Innovation Challenge Prize worth £5,000 in cash to the winner.

New for 2020/21, the challenge, which is sponsored by chemical company BASF,  aims to incentivise those innovators working on tools and approaches across the agricultural sectors that address the issues between soil health, climate change, productivity and biodiversity.

Farm491 Centre and Events Manager, Verity Payne said: “With a world population expected to reach more than nine billion by 2050, much of the current debate around the future of farming focuses on sustainably providing enough nutritious food for this growing population while conserving the natural resource base upon which we are all dependent.

“Initiatives such as this Challenge Prize are designed to give a ‘leg-up’ to those companies working on novel solutions to the issue of productivity versus biodiversity.”

Applications are invited from any company that feels able to answer the questions posed by the Challenge with a deadline of 15th November for the first stage of applications. Following a shortlisting period, six finalists will be selected and invited to attend a bootcamp day focusing on pitching practice. In January 2021 the finalists will pitch their solution to a panel of industry experts and an overall winner selected. The winner will be awarded a £5,000 cash prize and 12 months of business support and mentoring from the Farm491 team.