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The Sustainable AgTech Challenge

Agriculture and food systems in Latin America and the Caribbean Region (LAC) are rightfully recognized as among the most successful on the planet: they have fed a fast-growing population, facilitated economic development, enabled urbanization, generated substantial exports, and helped drive down global hunger and poverty.

Yet despite these significant contributions, the public image of the region’s agriculture and food systems as dynamic, productive, and efficient reflects only part of a more complicated reality. The impressive achievements have come at the expense of significant environmental and health costs.

LAC agriculture uses over one-third of the region’s land area, consumes nearly three-quarters of the region’s fresh water resources, and generates almost one-half of the region’s greenhouse gas emissions. And despite the consistent food production surpluses, millions of people in LAC regularly go hungry or suffer from malnutrition and related diseases. In short, the region’s successes in feeding the population and exporting food to the rest of the world are exacting high costs on people and on the environment.

On top of that, climate change emerges as a powerful driver affecting the evolution of agriculture and food systems in Latin America and the Caribbean. Agriculture in LAC is highly vulnerable to climate change, as a result of temperatures rising and changing patterns of precipitation levels. By the mid-21st century climate change is also projected to reduce renewable surface water and groundwater resources in most dry subtropical regions.

The call for this challenge is aimed at innovations and startups with products, services and/or technologies that are contributing to fight the causes and impacts of climate change, thus  creating more regenerative, sustainable and inclusive agrifood systems. 

I want to collaborate

Sponsors, partners and others interested in supporting the challenge and policy assessment, please contact us clicking  the button below.  We welcome strategics, SMEs, innovators and other agtech stakeholders interested

in supporting this important challenge and policy assessment for the LAC region.

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The selected finalists will have the benefit of working with UNEP, the Yield Lab Institute (YLI), the Yield Lab LATAM (YLL), Universidad de Austral of Rosario and our global network of business, technical and policy stakeholders in agriculture and agtech.  The 3-5 selected applicants will get the following:

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The opportunity to compete for prizes and awards, e.g. in-kind services, etc., to help scale, grow and commercialize their ideas and innovations.

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Mentorship, entrepreneurial networking opportunities and resources to

 help advance their ideas, innovations in the areas of business, technical,

 financial and environmental impact.

Current stage​

3 - Evaluation of applications

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Meet the Final Cohort

Bloomspal:

This AgriTech startup helps importers and exporters to discover, manage and engage with each other the way they need everyday. A cloud software strategically crafted to centralize the entire procurement operation for one of the most fast-paced and high-risk supply chains. Built for high-risk supply chains.

Cladonia:

This startup is developing a microscopy-based biological profiling solution for soil and compost that is flexible, inexpensive, scalable, and actionable. It is Computer Vision based soil and compost assessment software. It identifies, characterizes, and quantifies multiple groups of relevant soil microorganisms (bacteria, fungi, nematodes, and protozoans), capturing relevant, high-throughput data, currently unavailable, at near-zero marginal costs.

ClearLeaf:

ClearLeaf uses patent-pending technology, organic certified in Japan and the EU, to provide a line of nox-toxic fungicides and bactericides for agricultural use.  ClearLeaf S.A. was launched in Costa Rica to commercialize GotaBlanca©, a non-toxic contact action liquid emulsion that uses nanotechnology for the control and management of agricultural fungal and bacterial pests on living plants and post-harvest on fruits, vegetables and flowers.

 

Climate Sense:

Helps to improve production processes mainly in the agricultural sector with climate data in real time. To achieve this they created their own hardware and software development. In addition, they provide a low-cost weather station with more than 8 sensors that feed their software algorithms to help agricultural producers make the best decisions. 

Mi Terro:

The company creates ocean degradable and home compostable flexible packaging materials made from agricultural waste to replace plastic and paper.  Mi Terro is the world's first advanced material company that partners with food companies and farmers to create home compostable, single-use plastic-alternative packaging materials made from plant-based agricultural waste – a unique approach.

SavrPak:

This team manufactures and sells its patented universal packaging tech which extends the shelf life of agriculture products like leafy greens and berries by as much as 2 weeks. SAVRpak is a technology company that uses compostable, non-chemical sachets to extend the quality of foods, agriculture products and delivery (hot) foods.

The Earth Says:

The startup is dedicated to optimizing pollination processes by increasing agricultural yields through a complete analysis of field conditions and pollinators, implementing monitoring technology before and during the pollination process, increasing yields and income per hectare, and reducing the risks of low production.

Ucrop.It:

This collaborative mobile platform articulates agro actors to boost crops cycles expected results, through the simple registration of agronomic events and it's realization evidence on blockchain.

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