For food exporting nations, such as New Zealand, where large scale agriculture remains a huge part of the economy, the environmental cost of greenhouse gas emissions and nutrient runoff pollution has become a focus for action. In the meantime global populations continue to grow as does the demand for food. Agritech innovation is increasingly becoming an important part of the solution.
Now with our government having set an ambitious emissions reduction target of net-zero by 2050 and with local authorities quite rightly under increasing public and legislative pressure to protect waterways, every avenue must be explored to manage agricultural emissions and waste. Funding initiatives such as the New Zealand Green Investment Fund (NZGIF) and He Waka Eke Noa will play a part in achieving this goal. He Waka Eke Noa is a government, primary sector and iwi partnership working to reduce on-farm agricultural greenhouse gas emissions and support adaptation to climate change. The goal is to enable sustainable food and fibre production for future generations. NZGIF is a government backed green investment bank providing loans and equity funding for decarbonisation projects.
So technologies that can help measure, manage and reduce agricultural emissions and waste increasingly need to become part of the farm toolkit. Plant based food and fibre products and green technologies that mitigate climate impact are also receiving huge amounts of venture investment right now. That is where our agritech innovators come in! Here in Canterbury we are blessed with numerous agricultural research institutes and a couple of universities brimming over with projects addressing food, climate and sustainability. But researchers need support with commercialisation pathways if we are to make progress.
That is why ThincLab Canterbury advisors are once again pleased to be part of the team facilitating the 2022 Food, Fibre and Agritech Supernode Challenge alongside B.linc Innovation and University of Canterbury Centre for Entrepreneurship. The programme offers a curated acceleration programme and over $70,000 in prizes and mentoring support for innovators, researchers and entrepreneurs working on startup ventures in food, fibre or agritech.
Sign up for FFA ’22 today and become part of the solution.