AgLaunch Adds Three More Programs For Ag Startups
Memphis Bioworks AgTech Launches Three More Programs
AgTech and Agriculture Startups are on the rise nationwide. There are a handful of AgTech accelerators across the country and that trend seems to be on the rise.
Memphis is known for it’s grit and grind entrepreneurial spirit and that doesn’t change when it comes to farming. The newest AgLaunch programs focus on the midsouth region.
AgLaunch continues to expand its farm-centric innovation platform to accelerate the process of bringing new ideas into agriculture. The organization offers a one-stop shop for researchers, farmers, logistic providers, processors, non-profits, investors and corporate partners to help validate and grow new ideas in the agricultural space.
“With a growing world population, agriculture must advance and adapt to keep up,” Tennessee Commissioner of Agriculture Jai Templeton said. “Farmers are natural innovators. AgLaunch’s farm-focused model is matching farmers with new and improved technology and resources to help solve global problems, while catalyzing economic growth in our region.”
AgLaunch announced three programs in 2017 that will advance agricultural innovation to the next level:
- AgLaunch Accelerator will invest $50,000 and three months of intensive business development support, access to farm trials and a robust mentor network to six startup companies. Participating startups will be immersed in a collaborative Summer of Acceleration experience in Memphis with six other business accelerators May 1 to Aug. 10. Entrepreneurial programming is supported through the expertise of EPIcenter and Start Co., a member of the Global Accelerator Network that has led more than 80 startup companies. Startups also will have access to expert agri-marketing and legal advice provided by Archer Malmo and Baker Donelson respectively. The AgLaunch Accelerator is funded in part through a grant from Launch Tennessee.
- AgLaunch Farmer Network is working with a select group of startups to coordinate farm scale trials with new technologies across various production environments and key crops. Lead participants in the farmer network include Ritter Agribusiness and Mid-South Family Farms.
- AgLaunch Startup Station is an all-day pitch contest held on March 3 in conjunction with the Mid-South Farm and Gin Show, which hosts more than 400 exhibitors and 20,000 farmers. Startups will pitch to expert panels comprised of farmers, investors and corporate partners, including Farm Bureau, Farm Credit, DuPont, Monsanto Growth Ventures and Case IH. The event will be preceded by The Combine reception the evening of March 2.
These AgLaunch initiatives focus on a range of technologies, including precision agriculture, robotics, automation, biologic-based pest control, specialty crops, equipment modifications, food ingredients, supply chain integrity and traceability, soil health, reduction of spray drift, food safety and reduction of food waste, water/input efficiencies and innovations in the supply chain.