Farmers2Founders (F2F), a new farmer entrepreneurship program designed to support Australian primary producers to take charge of emerging technologies, new business models, and a rapidly changing consumer market, received a significant boost this week with Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews announcing F2F have received national Government funding through the Incubator Support initiative funding as part of the Entrepreneurs’ Programme.
The program has been designed to help producers build their entrepreneurial and technological skills so they can solve real industry issues, capitalise on and commercialise new technologies, and bring novel, high-value products to market. The program delivers tools, resources, coaching and expert support to help producers participate directly in bringing new agtech, foodtech, and food ventures to market with a platform primed for global exposure.
With the support of Minister Andrews and industry heavyweights, the F2F platform is well on its way to connecting entrepreneurial producers with top-quality research, business advice, and the ag and food tech ecosystem in Australian and internationally.
Agriculture is predicted to become Australia’s next $100bn industry by 2030. “We recognise the critical role incubators and start-ups play across the economy in creating new high-value jobs,” Minister Andrews said in announcing the hub.
F2F will kick-off with regional workshops across several states in Australia, with doors open to producers keen to learn more about the latest trends and benefits of emerging new ag and food technology. Following the workshops, producers that are ready to transform their businesses inside and beyond the farm gate can apply for the F2F innovation streams in agtech, foodtech, and food innovation.
Farmers2Founders was established by thought leaders and innovation specialists Sarah Nolet (AgThentic) and Dr. Christine Pitt (Food Futures Company). The co-founders saw a gap between the agriculture and tech communities, and knew a unique project was needed to solve the problem.
Sarah Nolet explains, “our aim is to elevate the role of producers to solve real problems. Producers have hard-won expertise, insights, context, and networks. We must unlock this potential and enable producers to catalyse more high value agrifood innovations.”
Dr. Pitt said, “changing global conditions in agriculture are creating a fantastic opportunity for our food and fibre industry in Australia, and we want to make sure that producers have every opportunity to contribute their experience and play a key role. We know there are producers who are ready to step forward to develop new technologies, new value chains and new products and we wanted to create a program that was designed specifically for them.”
Farmers2Founders is proudly supported by AgriFutures Australia, Australian Wool Innovation, Grains Research and Development Corporation, Meat & Livestock Australia, and Wine Australia.
The first workshop will take place in the Atherton Tablelands on Tuesday, 9 April 2019.
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