IFTSA & Mars Product Development Competition

Mars-Wrigley logoThe 31st Annual IFTSA and MARS Product Development Competition is a chance for students to take the skills and knowledge learned in school and apply them to a real-world situation.

Each participating school’s team develops a new food idea and carries the concept through marketing and production, much like a commercial product development team. This is a great opportunity for any student to get involved in food science and IFTSA. It challenges organization, teamwork, creativity, and scientific skills.

2019–2020 Competition Winner Presentation

2019–2020 Winners

  • First Place: Smoothie Bites, Cornell University
  • Second Place: Faba Friends, University of California, Davis
  • Third Place: Vege Boom, University of Massachusetts Amherst

2019–2020 Finalists

  • Swift Cold Brew, Chapman University
  • Jack-etz, Michigan State University
  • Rice n’ Bees, Purdue University


Each of the finalist teams will receive a certificate and a reimbursement for travel the IFT Annual Event & Food Expo of up to $1,500. Winners will be announced at the IFTSA Closing Ceremony. Prize amounts are as follows:

  • First Place: $3,000
  • Second Place: $1,500
  • Third Place: $500

The winning team will be highlighted in the post-event issue of Food Technology magazine.


In this team competition, participants must be student members of the Institute of Food Technologists and registered as a student during the fall semester of the competition. Teams are limited to 10 members and there may only be one team per university. For complete details, consult the guidelines document for this competition.

2020–2021 Competition Submission and Guidelines

The submission deadline for this competition has passed.

Download competition guidelines (PDF)

Download proposal template (PDF)

Sample Verification Letter

Download sample letter (PDF)

Competition Chair

Kory Anderson, Washington State University