Feed the World 2030 Power of Plants Hackathon

A summary

Hackathon team ‘Lightfoods’ and their innovative platform with AR/VR for the world’s largest farmers market took the win at the Feed the World 2030 – Power of Plants Hackathon #FTW2030.

The judges thought this team had hooked onto some global emerging trends, the importance of being local, consumer preferences and technologies to come up with an idea which could meet market demand.

“This collaboration of a group of aligned sponsors, hackers, mentors, judges and the all-important behind-the-sceners, created a great melting pot of scientists, students, agri business, tech, food, farmers, customer champions, growers and agri consultants. Cross-sector networks, collaboration and co-investment is vital to develop new, successful initiatives and innovations in agri food tech in New Zealand.” said Lincoln Hub, CEO Toni Laming.

“The 3 winners at the Pitch Showcase were Lightfoods, Betterwhey and Proteam. We believe that everyone who engaged in the event came out with valuable insight into new ways of creative thinking and collaborating for agri-innovation using the diversity of talent and skills; at the end of the day, a real win for all Plant Power pioneers and for NZ’s future.”

Over 80 individuals came together over the weekend to form thirteen teams. They designed, hacked and innovated for two days around future solutions to feed the world. A range of creative solutions were presented ranging from an organic network to a way to feed Pacific Islands whose food production abilities are impacted by global warming and natural disaster. At the heart of all the solutions was the creation of value for New Zealand at the same time as protecting the world for future generations.

The hackers had the support of a team of mentors from across the agri, food, tech and entrepreneur sectors. “Without the dedication of the mentors, the weekend wouldn’t have had these fantastic outcomes. As sponsors it was really important to us that we had the right mix of people to help the diverse teams – the mentors got it spot on.” said Agmardt Director Richard Green.

“It was just fantastic to see the diverse teams come together over the weekend, it was evident that this diversity created solutions that individuals alone from one discipline could not have designed.” said Callaghan Chair, Sue Suckling.

Lincoln Hub is focused on building an innovative agrifood eco-system through strengthening the connections and networks across sectors and with science to design and create New Zealand’s future agrifood platforms. Watch this space for future events and initiatives.


The Results

Best Overall: Global Growth Award
The team with the most innovative business model that is primed for overseas growth and impact. Teaming up plant proteins for optimal nutrition.
Proteam – not all proteins are created equal. Make menu planning easy for nutritionists for aged and sick with targeted protein combinations

Sustainability Award
This special honour goes to the team that is optimising precious resources and making the world a much better place. Unlocking new value from New Zealand agriculture by converting forages into high-quality plant-based food
Betterwhey – unlocking value in NZ pastures by converting plants to whey protein alternatives.

Out-of-the-Box Award
Show your creativity! This award goes to the team that brings new thinking and a unique approach to their pitch. Facilitating the local food movement with the worlds largest online farmers market and purpose-built digital economy
Lightfoods – a platform with AR/VR for the world’s largest farmers market.

With thanks to

Our Judges
Vic Crone – CEO, Callaghan Innovation
Mike Manning – GM Innovation and Strategy, Ravensdown
Graham Brown – Master Chef
Yoseph Ayele – CEO, Kiwi Connect/Edmond Hillary Foundation
Jeffrey Law – Chief Technology Officer, Autogrow
Mandy Armstrong – Strategic Business Development Manager, Landcorp

Our mentors and coaches
We had a special team of 30 people who took time out on the weekend, many travelled at their own cost to be mentors and coaches for the teams as the refined their problems, designed and tested their responses, designed again and then pitched them to the judges. This expertise, insight and mentoring was key to bring out the best in the teams. Annabel Langbein spent 3 hours with the teams and was excited by the level and range of innovation across the cohort

Sponsors who got this off the ground!
Lincoln Hub teamed up with AGMARDT and the Foundation for Arable Research (FAR) to get this started and were supported by Callaghan Innovation, Plant & Food Research, Foodstuffs, Landcare Research, AgResearch, Lincoln University, fresh food from New World Lincoln, plus a load of product sponsors. A big thank you to you all for making this event possible!!

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