Millions of dollars are being doled out to the four winners of the inaugural Innovating Soil 3.0 — a challenge by FoodShot Global that taps into key investments to help transform the food system. The winner of the main investment (which is upwards of $2 million) from S2G Ventures was Trace Genomics, which is increasing crop yield by analyzing soil’s DNA.
There was also $535,000 in GroundBreaker Prize money awarded to:
- Dr. Keith Paustian, who has developed a COMET tool system ($250,000)
- Dr. Gerlinde De Deyn for her work in plant biodiversity, trait-based approaches to plant-soil interactions, and more ($250,000)
- Dr. Dorn Cox for his vision of Open Technology Ecosystem for Agricultural Management to povide universal access to site specific global agricultural knowledge ($35,000)
FoodShot Global winners are building a new soil foundation by providing technological or ecological tools that enable farmers to maximize yield and the long-term health of the land. They will all receive guidance, mentorship, and capacity-building resources for maximum impact and scale.
“We chose to start with soil because any future that imagines 10 billion people eating healthy and sustainably with equal access will require healthy soil,” said FoodShot Global Founder and Chairman Victor Friedberg. “The three people we announced today are all groundbreakers whose inspired work lays the foundation for the next generation of solutions to the urgency we now face as a civilization. I couldn’t be more impressed and inspired by these inaugural FoodShot Global award winners and look forward to sharing what they’re doing with a larger audience.”
Since launching the Innovating Soil 3.0 challenge in September 2018, FoodShot Global received 176 GroundBreaker Prize nominations and 235 applications for debt/equity investment from 6 continents and over 40 countries. These winners were judged by investors and experts based on core criteria including their alignment with FoodShot Global’s mission of creating a healthier, more sustainable, more equitable food system; their connection to the Innovating Soil 3.0 challenge, the global relevance of their work, their ability to realize growth and scale, and their likelihood of facilitating future innovation and systemic change.