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Seeding the Future Grants Prizes

Grants and Awards

The selection criteria for each award level will vary and are outlined below. Across all award levels, IFT is committed to equity and inclusion in supporting organizations that seek to transform our food systems. The Seeding The Future Global Food System Challenge therefore seeks to support entities—both non-profit and early stage for-profit—who can demonstrate the potential of their innovations to make a real impact but who may lack capital to progress their work. Special considerations will be given to teams made up of diverse backgrounds or cultures, as well as teams focusing on serving under-resourced populations.

Will be awarded to applicants that are planting and nurturing high-potential, innovative ideas and have developed a prototype and/or initial proof of concept demonstrating feasibility. Recipients will receive $25,000 each. A successful Seed Grant applicant must:

Provide a clear description of the proposed concept, with preliminary evidence from successful early experiments or prototypes—at any scale—that the idea is feasible. Seed Grant awardees may also be able to advance to higher award levels in subsequent years upon successful completion of the required criteria for those levels. 

Demonstrate that the innovation or idea is truly multidisciplinary in nature and has either team members or significant input from multiple disciplines such as: Health and Nutrition, Life Sciences, Food or Ag Science and Engineering, Environmental Science, Food Policy, Economics, and Consumer Behavior. 

Focus on benefitting at least one of the following domains while not having a negative impact on the other domains:

  • Safe and nutritious food for a healthy diet 
  • Sustainable, regenerative practices
  • Empower conscious consumer choices 

Provide a clear description of the projected benefits and the expected short-and long-term impact of the innovation on the food system, consumer behavior, and on personal or planetary health. 

Give consideration to how the benefit of the innovation to the food system or the environment can be communicated to the consumer. If applicable, provide a perspective how the innovation may affect other food system value chain stakeholders.

Provide a clear and feasible budget and timeline that includes activities, deliverables, and milestones.

Meet the grant requirements of IFT, based on a review of your organizational and financial documents.

In addition to a financial award, all awardees may also receive several non-financial benefits and incentives, including the following:

  • Organizational profile posted on the IFT website. 
  • Features in IFT member communications, including newsletters and social media channels. 
  • Invitation and recognition at IFT's Annual Meeting and Expo, which may provide exposure and access to potential customers, suppliers, mentors, and investors. 
  • Initiation into the Challenge’s alumni network. 

Apply Now

Will be awarded to applicants that have demonstrated their innovation is doable and have projected both economic feasibility at scale and high impact potential to transform the food system. Recipients will receive $100,000 each. A successful Growth Grant applicant must:

  •  Have conducted experiments or activities demonstrating scalability of the innovation. Generated robust data enabling projection of economic feasibility at scale. 
  • Take a multi-disciplinary approach: The innovation incorporates the perspectives of multiple disciplines (i.e., Health and Nutrition, Live Sciences, Food or Ag Science and Engineering, Food Policy, Environmental Science, Economics, and Consumer Behavior). This could include having core team-members or advisors  from different disciplines contributing to the innovation. 
  • Have demonstrated benefits to at least two of the following domains while not having a negative impact on the remaining domain.
    • Safe and nutritious food for a healthy diet
    • Sustainable, regenerative practices
    • Empower conscious consumer choices
  • Based on conducted experiments and data, provide a clear description of the short-and-long-term benefits, impact, and risk potential of the innovation on the food system, the consumer behavior, and on personal and planetary health. If possible, provide an order of magnitude estimate of the population size that may be positively affected (for example: 1 million, 10 million, 100 million) and the approximate time horizon (for example: 5 years, 10 years, 15 years). If applicable, provide a perspective on how the innovation will affect other adjacent food system value chain stakeholders.
  • Have created insights based on data that show how benefits of the innovation can or will empower consumers to choose healthier food options also benefiting the environment.
  • Provide a perspective on whether the innovation aligns with existing food policy frameworks and if not, what policy shifts may be beneficial to maximizing the potential of the innovation or if new policy may be needed.
  • Provides a clear and feasible budget and timeline that includes activities, deliverables, and milestones laying out how the prize money will be spent. If the Prize applicant is a for-profit early stage or emerging entity, it will have developed a business plan including how the Prize money will advance the business to scale (scope, timeline, budget). Applicants should also demonstrate strong team building and leadership skills, business ethics, and commitment to diversity and inclusion. 
  • Meet the award requirements of IFT, based on a review of your organizational and financial documents.
In addition to a financial award, all awardees may also receive several non-financial benefits and incentives, including the following:
  • Organizational profile posted on the IFT website. 
  • Features in IFT member communications, including newsletters and social media channels. 
  • Invitation and recognition at IFT's Annual Meeting and Expo, which may provide exposure and access to potential customers, suppliers, mentors, and investors. 
  • Initiation into the Challenge’s alumni network. 
  • Seeding The Future Grand Prize awardees may also have access to networking opportunities with potential mentors and investors.

Apply Now

Will be awarded to applicants that have created innovations that are scalable, economically feasible, trusted, and compelling to consumers, and have demonstrated major impact potential to transform the food system. Recipients will receive $250,000 each. A successful Grand Prize applicant must:

Have conducted experiments or activities demonstrating scalability of the innovation. Generated robust data enabling projection of economic feasibility at scale. 

Take a multi-disciplinary approach: The innovation incorporates the perspectives of multiple disciplines (i.e., Health and Nutrition, Live Sciences, Food or Ag Science and Engineering, Food Policy, Environmental Science, Economics, and Consumer Behavior). This could include having core team-members or advisors  from different disciplines contributing to the innovation. 

  • Have demonstrated benefits to at least two of the following domains while not having a negative impact on the remaining domain.
    • Safe and nutritious food for a healthy diet
    • Sustainable, regenerative practices
    • Empower conscious consumer choices

Based on conducted experiments and data, provide a clear description of the short-and-long-term benefits,  impact, and risk potential of the innovation on the food system, the consumer behavior, and on personal and planetary health. If possible, provide an order of magnitude estimate of the population size that will be positively affected (for example: 1 million, 10 million, 100 million) and the time horizon (for example: 5 years, 10 years, 15 years). If applicable, provide a perspective on how the innovation will affect other adjacent food system value chain stakeholders.  

Have created insights based on data that show how benefits of the innovation can or will empower consumers to choose healthier food options also benefiting the environment. 

Provide a perspective on whether the innovation aligns with existing food policy frameworks and if not, what policy shifts may be beneficial to maximizing the potential of the innovation or if new policy may be needed. 

Provides a clear and feasible budget and timeline that includes activities, deliverables, and milestones laying out how the prize money will be spent. If the Prize applicant is a for-profit early stage or emerging entity, it will have developed a business plan including how the Prize money will advance the business to scale (scope, timeline, budget). Applicants should also demonstrate strong team building and leadership skills, business ethics, and commitment to diversity and inclusion. 

Meet the award requirements of IFT, based on a review of your organizational and financial documents.

In addition to a financial award, all awardees may also receive several non-financial benefits and incentives, including the following:
 
  • Organizational profile posted on the IFT website.
  • Features in IFT member communications, including newsletters and social media channels. 
  • Invitation and recognition at IFT's Annual Meeting and Expo, which may provide exposure and access to potential customers, suppliers, mentors, and investors.
  • Initiation into the Challenge’s alumni network.
  • Seeding The Future Grand Prize awardees may also have access to networking opportunities with potential mentors and investors.

Apply Now