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Growing Innovation Competition

Are you a CAFRE student with a game changing idea for the agrifood industry?  We can help to kickstart your idea. 


The Growing Innovation Competition is now open for applications.  Deadline to apply is 4pm on Friday 10th November 2023.  The competition will support 10 CAFRE students/teams to develop their ideas. 

We launched the first Innovation Competition in 2022 and the winners Seedability walked away with £4,000 to get their business launched.  This year the prize fund is £5,000.


Did you know that some of Northern Ireland's best young agrifood innovators started by entering a competition?

People like Brendan Digney, the award winning founder of Machine Eye who is using computer vision and artificial intelligence to make tractors safer. 

Simon Hegarty launched In Juice, shots made from highly nutritious microgreens. 


Rachel Coulter developed Stable Manager using her unique combination of experience with horses and her software skills. 


Micheál McLaughlin, co-founder of Cropsafe, is helping growers across the world to make better decisions about their crops.

For all of them it started with an idea, a notion, a spark.  Entering a competition took it to the next stage.  They had to write it down, talk to people, get feedback, pitch it, refine it, pitch it again.  That's what it takes to make ideas a reality.  From there they got connected with a whole ecosystem of support - advice, mentors, funders, investors, networks.

The Innovation Competition is open to any good, sustainable, viable ideas.  It can be a product, a process, a clever farm hack, a social enterprise.

If you have an idea, big or small, why not have a go - what's the worst that can happen?

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