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evokeAG Wrap Up - Collaboration Is Key

evokeAG 2023 was buzzing with excitement - people ready to learn, share, collaborate and shake hands after a two year hiatus.

The Farmers2Founders team attended the 2-day event, bringing along two cohorts from the Harvest Accelerator Program and the current Gateway To Australia cohort from the UK.

Here is a snapshot of our standout sessions from the event:

  • Our very own Matthew Anderson did an incredible job on stage as an evokeAG Future Young Leader, sharing the mission behind what we do at Farmers2Founders.

“Don’t fall into the trap of overlooking the importance of our farmers being engaged in the agtech transformation process. Get some dirt on your boots and listen to the needs of our farmers.”

  • Our Founder Dr Christine Pitt, alongside her dear friend Suzanne Thomson, shared messages about mobilising the Indigenous community and agritech sector to come together, challenging us to be the change, support young Indigenous people and notably First Nations women.

“We need to be brave and continue to share our cultural knowledge, bringing Indigenous and non-Indigenous together. There’s so much to learn.”

  • Our Alumni Fiona Turner (Bitwise Agronomy) and Luke Chaplain (SkyKelpie) talked agtech and data: a digital distraction, or a farmer’s friend?

  • Future Young Leader and alumni Issac Mayer (founder of Bush Bees)

“Bees are the key to providing stability and increasing yields”.

  • Alumnus Malkah Lara-Muckenschnabl (founder of Lymbo) and Future Young Leader said: “

I want to show the new generation how I see agriculture in and out of the paddock in a way that’s never been done before. I’m passionate about making it easier for everyone to enter the agriculture industry and providing those opportunities.”

  • Our newly appointed General Manager Dr Ben Baghurst discussed agritech and how it is often positioned to improve efficiency, profitability and sustainability. However, as Ben pointed out:

“it actually lets farmers keep doing what they want to do and what they love.”

And that’s only a few of the wonderful sessions!

So what were our key takeaways?

  • The industry has come a long way, but we need to keep going

  • Effective technology implementation can help solve industry challenges, both on-farm and across the value chain

  • Collaboration is key when confronted with complex issues

We asked a few of the F2F team to share some personal reflections on the event:

Matt Anderson, Agtech Projects Manager

EvokeAg 2023 was a powerful opportunity for all stakeholders across the agrifoodtech sector to come together, share insights, and drive collaboration. It was particularly evident to me how much the theme of sustainability has come to the fore in recent years. Across the the few days, there were several panel discussions, start-up companies and thought leaders who stressed the need for a proactive focus on reducing the industrys’ environmental impact and fast-tracking the development and adoption of technologies which enable our industry to be more sustainable. There was an evident belief at the conference that technology and innovation are key enablers in this regard, and that many of the industries problems could be solved with effective technology implementations, both on-farm and across the value chain. This was a key takeaway from me and one which aligns with our work at Farmers2Founders, to accelerate the adoption of technologies on-farm and across the supply chain which help farmers to become more sustainable.

Claire Pink, Operations and Partnerships Manager

After a forced hiatus, EvokeAg 2023 was a well awaited jamboree of producers, industry, government, tech developers and other essential intermediaries ready to connect, collaborate and celebrate how far the Australian agtech ecosystem has come since EvokeAg 2020. The excitement in the room was reflected in the conversations as the reality of people to people connections, hand shakes and often hugs finally overshadowed the ‘virtual zoom’ relationships we had become accustomed with.

The stand out for me at evoke23 was the international interest in our Australian agtech ecosystem. The United Kingdom, New Zealand and Canada are just a sample of the international delegations that I spoke with who were keen to ‘get involved’ and leverage our diverse landscape and be part of our Australian agtech story. I have always said it takes a village to raise a start up and Farmers2Founders is proud to be connecting the global village of industry, producers, tech developers, researchers and all those along the value chain to make a positive impact on the Agriculture sector. Bring on evoke24!

Britta Marsh, Community and Marketing Manager

I never thought I would work in the agriculture industry. But now that I have started my journey into learning the intricacies, ecosystem and nuances of this great industry, I feel like shouting: “Hey everybody, come and see this!” I am fortunate to be able to learn from most parts of the ecosystem on a daily basis; producers, researchers, agtech companies, supply chain stakeholders, entrepreneurs, agribusiness consultants and industry bodies…just to name a few. My deep dive into the ag industry culminated last week as the ecosystem came together to connect, reflect, learn and celebrate at evokeAG in Adelaide. One thing I have learnt about this industry is that it is facing some very complex problems. These problems include environmental and sustainability challenges; supply chain disruptions and how to feed a growing population; technology adoption and luring people to the industry. Highlighted, in particular by the Future Young Leaders, collaboration is key to solving the challenges faced by the industry.

Passion is power.

Education is key.

Sharing is caring.

You don’t have to be a farmer to be in ag.

Everyone is welcome.

Don’t forget to get your boots dirty.

Don't leave our farmers behind.

Speak less. Listen more.

If you are an innovator or entrepreneur, come and have a yarn with a farmer.

If you are a farmer with a problem (or an idea), speak up - we want to hear from you.

James Muir, Pre-Accelerator Manager

evokeAg was a wonderful immersion into the industry. Coming from a startup and entrepreneurship background it was amazing to see the openness and collaboration in the industry. In this regard, I really enjoyed the discussions around interoperability as this is not something that is openly pursued in many other verticals. I found the networking and Hive setup to be literally buzzing with opportunities, which have led to continued conversations post evokeAG.

Watch our wrap up video here:

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