Invest Atlanta, in partnership with the City of Atlanta, The Metro Atlanta Chamber, the Atlanta Beltline and Georgia Power, launched its search for the most innovative AgTech solutions. Applications are now open for the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge.
To improve food resilience at home and abroad, the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge will select six solutions to tackle this issue via IoT. Startups are encouraged to collaborate to provide one complete and innovative AgTech solution. The selected startups will get access to a 20-foot shipping container along the Atlanta Beltline to pilot their AgTech over the course of 12-months as part of Atlanta's Demonstration Project program.
"Invest Atlanta's Demonstration Project provides startups with opportunities for proof of concept, which can be helpful in a critical stage of a startup's life cycle," said Dr. Eloisa Klementich, President and CEO of Invest Atlanta. "Engaging the next generation of agricultural technology startups in the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge gives entrepreneurs the chance to test and validate their technologies over 12 months in a real-life urban setting. Our partnerships with entrepreneurs have the potential to not only improve our city's health, environment, and economy, but also to change the world."
From seed production to farming to food processing, agriculture technology (AgTech) is fast-becoming an answer to growing global food shortages. By 2050 the projected food demand will increase anywhere between 59 to 98 percent.
The Metro Atlanta Chamber and City of Atlanta are developing partnerships with community-based organizations to ensure the fresh produce grown in the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge pilot is received by those needing it the most.
"As Atlanta goes through tremendous growth, we want equity and inclusion at the heart of everything we do," said Cynthia Curry, Director of IoT for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. "The goal of the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge is to unearth new, viable food resilience solutions for our city and other cities as they scale."
Duluth-based agricultural equipment manufacturer, AGCO will provide the shipping containers, and through their Fuse smart farming platform, AGCO will we collaborate and exchange ideas with AgTech startups.
"Now more than ever, it is critical that we develop an accessible, equitable, and resilient local food system for One Atlanta," said Amol Naik, City of Atlanta Chief Resilience Officer. "We are excited that AgTech has been selected as the first challenge of the Living Labs program and look forward to seeing how innovation and technology will maximize the efficacy of urban agriculture - all while raising awareness of these critical issues on the Atlanta Beltline."
In addition to test space along the Atlanta Beltline, winning startups will receive mentorship and guidance from the Atlanta civic, corporate and technology community during the pilot.
Applications are open for the IoT.ATL AgTech Challenge and will remain open until November 2. Interested candidates residing outside of Atlanta are encouraged to apply here.