Through our Learning and Innovation Network for Knowledge and Solutions (LINK) programs and Social Innovation Labs, the Global Knowledge Initiative (GKI) actively supports top agricultural innovations that address issues of global food security. This past February, GKI COO Sara Farley participated as a judge in the Thought For Food (TFF) Global Summit in Lisbon, Portugal. At this annual competition, student entrepreneurs have the opportunity to hear from innovators from around the world and present projects that address food insecurity for the chance to win up to $10,000.
The 2015 TFF Global Summit featured creative and dynamic innovations from ten teams of finalists from Bangladesh, India, Sweden, Uganda, and more. Sara analyzed the Thought For Food finalists alongside a panel of six other judges: Puneet Ahira from Google[x], Dr. Joseph King from the Norman Borlaug Foundation, Nikolai Braun from Revolution Bioengineering, Gavin Armstrong from Lucky Iron Fish, Lorena Galvan from Jenlight, and the Kirchner Food Fellows.
The innovations submitted by teams of finalists were judged based on a variety of criteria including affordability, marketability, small- and large-scale impact, innovativeness, and how the innovation addresses the TFF priorities of nutrition and food security. The innovation from Team Aahaar, presented by students from the Indian Institute of Technology, attempts to reduce post-harvest loss with the use of an automated refrigeration truck. Hailing from Lund University in Sweden, the FoPo Food Powder Team created an innovation that uses freeze-drying to turn potential food waste into a powder with a variety of nutritional and food security related uses. The winning innovation, FoodFresh, was developed by Team Innovision, four students from the University of Dhaka in Bangladesh. The portable FoodFresh microclimate chamber uses an evaporation cooling system to provide a cool storing climate for produce, increasing shelf life and reducing waste.
GKI is thrilled to have had the opportunity to participate as a judge in the competition and hopes to partner with Thought for Food in the future to strengthen networks that support innovations and transform pilots into scale.
Contributors: Jill Carter and Srujana Penumetcha.