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May 15, 2024 | Katelyn Keenehan

AgLaunch kicks off annual bootcamps to boost agricultural innovation

Supporting agricultural start-ups helps position our community as a leader in the ag-tech space; in turn, driving economic growth and improved quality of life for community members.

AgLaunch, a leader in agricultural innovation and rural economic development, has announced its upcoming summer boot camp series aimed at fostering groundbreaking ideas and technologies in agriculture.

Supporting innovators in the agricultural sector is vital for our community’s economic health and sustainability. Agriculture remains a cornerstone of our regional economy, and investing in new technologies and ideas can lead to significant advancements in efficiency, productivity, and environmental stewardship.

The upcoming programming series introduces participants to AgLaunch’s farm-centric innovation model, providing essential knowledge on business structuring, pitching to investors, intellectual property protection, funding opportunities, and networking strategies.

The boot camps include both an in-person and a virtual event, making them accessible to a broad range of participants:

Cultivate Appalachia” is scheduled for June 11-13 in Knoxville. The in-person event is conducted in partnership with the Knoxville Entrepreneur Center (KEC). While it focuses on agricultural and food startups in Southern Appalachia, applications are open to startups from any region. Interested parties should apply by May 17.

AgLaunch Catalyst” is a virtual boot camp, taking place June 25-28, which caters to early-stage agricultural and food startups, particularly those outside the Appalachia region. The application deadline is June 1.

In addition to the boot camps, applications for the 2025 “AgLaunch365” program are open until August 5. This program provides transformative ag-tech startups with a farm-immersive business development experience to accelerate their time to market. Emphasizing rural economic development, AgLaunch365 is particularly interested in startups from RBIC (Rural Business Investment Company) regions.

Participants in AgLaunch365 benefit from programming led by experienced agricultural facilitators, farm trials monitored by agronomy, livestock, and data management experts, and access to AgLaunch’s exclusive national network of innovative farmers. This network offers peer-to-peer support crucial for moving technologies from concept to scale.

To learn more about AgLaunch365, an informational webinar will be held on June 17 at 1 p.m. CT. Interested participants should register online.

Innovative agricultural solutions can address pressing issues such as climate change, food security, and resource management. By participating in programs like AgLaunch’s boot camps and AgLaunch365, startups can develop technologies that enhance crop yields, improve livestock management, and optimize water usage, all of which are critical for sustaining our agricultural heritage and ensuring a stable food supply.

Furthermore, these innovations can create new job opportunities, benefit local economies, and attract additional investment to our region. By fostering a culture of innovation and supporting agricultural startups, we can position our community as a leader in the ag-tech space, driving economic growth and improving the quality of life for the community members.

For more information and to apply, visit AgLaunch’s website.

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