After a review of over 89 worldwide applicants, The Yield Lab Institute — in partnership with the United Soybean Board, Syngenta, and Amazon Web Services — announced the cohort finalists for the Soy Innovation Challenge. This group represents a diverse and compelling array of trailblazing innovations and technologies that have remarkable potential to capture value for farmers and disrupt the soy value chain.
“All of these innovations are game-changers and will enable farmers to stay ahead of end-user demands, delivering sustainable outcomes while still keeping farmer profitability at the forefront,” said Andy Fabin, USB’s Sustainability Target Area Coordinator and farmer from Indiana, Pennsylvania. “Access to new technology at our fingertips to make more strategic decisions will allow us to farm smarter in lockstep with the soybean supply chain as a whole.”
Launched in March, the Soy Innovation Challenge has a purpose to find disruptors across the supply chain to bring value to farmers. The finalists are developing solutions, from land stewardship and greenhouse gas monitoring to blockchain and traceability advancements, as well as detailed nutritional information, to ultimately accelerate sustainability enhancements and maximize profit opportunities through technology that’s seamless for soybean farmers to use.
The seven finalists are as follows:
- FluroSat — Provides full crop-cycle analytics for sustainable and profitable agriculture.
- Ecosystem Services Market Consortium — A nonprofit collaboration of food and agriculture companies, foundations, NGOs and producer associations working toward a 2022 launch of a national ecosystem services market. This will provide farmers with compensation for the economic and social benefits from their land stewardship practices, such as soil carbon sequestration, net greenhouse gas emission reductions, water quantity and quality improvements, and biodiversity.
- Sustainable Open Soy (SOS) — A free-for-farmers blockchain that traces U.S.-grown soy from origin to the end-consumer product. It allows farmers, brands and retailers to demonstrate commitment to sustainability, while accelerating trust and transparency throughout the soy industry. SOS is a joint venture between The New Fork and the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers in Action.
- Soil Metrics — Provides software services for farmers to understand current greenhouse gas emissions and evaluate options for reducing them.
- Genesis Feed Technologies — Platform that is increasing the market value of U.S. soybeans across the supply chain by revealing the economic impact of their high-quality nutritional profile. Their goal is to redefine premium standards for soybeans and bring that value back to the producers.
- SLUcode — Improves crop yield and maximizes profit by predictive analytics of seed quality and environmental stress, and by turning every pixel to actionable crop intelligence using the latest artificial intelligence/machine learning and cloud computing.
- Soy Carbohydrate Value — A collaborative cross-functional team working together to extract value from the waste soybean carbohydrate fraction. The effort is based on techno-economic analysis of processes to convert the carbohydrates into valuable industrial chemicals.
Soy Innovation Challenge winners will receive $100,000 in non-dilutive prize(s), provided by Syngenta; cloud computing credits, provided by Amazon Web Services; and mentoring to help advance their ideas in the areas of technical, business, financial and environmental impact, provided by the United Soybean Board. Further details will be shared soon about Soy Innovation Challenge programming, including the kickoff event scheduled for fall/winter 2020.