Farm Bureau awarding $165K to farm, rural entrepreneurs
The American Farm Bureau Federation, in partnership with Farm Credit, is seeking startup companies that are providing solutions to challenges faced by America’s farmers, ranchers and rural communities.
Online applications for the 2022 Farm Bureau Ag Innovation Challenge are being accepted through Aug. 20. Farm Bureau will award a total of $165,000 in startup funds to 10 semifinalists and three top winners.
Launched in 2015 as the first national competition focused on rural entrepreneurs, the challenge continues to identify agriculture businesspersons providing innovation essential to Farm Bureau members.
Last year’s winner developed software to help farmers hire, train and communicate with their employees. One of last year’s semifinalists launched an urban farmer training institute.
Ten startup companies will be selected to compete as semifinalists at the AFBF Convention in January 2022 in Atlanta. The 10 semifinalist teams will be announced on Oct. 5 and awarded $10,000 each. The final four teams will compete live on stage in front of Farm Bureau members, investors and industry representatives. The winner will receive $50,000, the runner-up will win $20,000 and the People’s Choice Team selected by public vote will receive $5,000. Prize money is provided by Farm Credit, Bayer Crop Science, Farm Bureau Bank, Farm Bureau Financial Services, FMC Corporation and John Deere.
Entrepreneurs must be Farm Bureau members to qualify as top 10 semifinalists. Applicants who are not Farm Bureau members can join a state Farm Bureau of their choice. Visit fb.org/about/join to learn about becoming a member.
Detailed eligibility guidelines, the competition timeline, videos and profiles of past winners are available at fb.org/challenge.