EIT Food is planning a new horizon for agricultural and food innovation in Europe. Connecting consumers, start-ups, industry partners, innovators, small-to-medium enterprises, and universities, the food innovation initiative aims for immediate action across disciplines toward a sustainable and future-proof food sector.
As a Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), an independent E.U. body established in 2010, EIT Food implements the organization’s objectives to stimulate entrepreneurship on the path towards social, economic, and environmental wellbeing. EIT Food aims to bring the food sector into the 21st century by unifying efforts to fix the food system’s fragmented structure, lack of consumer trust, limited innovation, and slow adoption of new technologies.
EIT Food’s activities include education programs, business creation and acceleration support, and initiatives to improve nutrition. EIT Food also hosts forums and networking events to create “innovation ecosystems” of entrepreneurship that bring food system players across all disciplines together to develop solutions to leading agriculture and food issues.
Annually, EIT Food plans to host the EIT Food Accelerator Network Programme, a four-month period that equips start-ups with the connections, mentors, tools, and expertise they need to develop; the three most successful start-ups receive an award including EUR€60,000 each. EIT Food announced their 2018 winners this past November, recognizing start-ups from Portugal, Israel, and Germany.
Beyond supporting continent-wide agriculture and innovation, EIT Food selects organizations and appoints them as Hubs to achieve objectives in local food systems. In 2019, EIT Food aims to add 13 Hubs in countries across the continent.
In 2017, EIT established the EIT Food KIC in partnership with over 50 of Europe’s leading food companies, research, and educational institutions. The network also includes The RisingFoodStars Association, which brings together Europe’s best agri-food tech start-ups. EIT Food joins five other KICs such as Climate and Health to change the way Europe embraces promising start-ups and new ideas.
Food Tank will be working with EIT Food to engage our readers and specialists from multiple disciplines to share innovations, debate, form partnerships, and work collaboratively toward an economically vibrant, socially just, and environmentally sustainable food system.