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August 10, 2017 | Tom Ballard

KEC selects August 26 Farmers’ Market for “AgWorks Demo Day”

AgWorksIt is probably the most unique, but also most symbolic venue that has been selected in our region for a start-up accelerator finale.

The Knoxville Entrepreneur Center  (KEC) announced this week that the “AgWorks Demo Day” will be held Saturday, August 26, during that day’s Farmers’ Market on the city’s venerable Market Square Mall.

If you haven’t attended the Saturday morning spectacular, it is truly a beehive of activity with food and other vendors showcasing their wares. The event consumes portions of several city blocks, so there will be a good crowd already in the area.

Jim Biggs, KEC’s Executive Director, says the five teams will have about six minutes each to pitch their agriculture-focused start-ups, presenting from the stage at the north end of Market Square. They will also have booths where interested individuals can talk with them.

The five teams are:

  • Cattle Market Mobile which provides up-to-date market data for farmers on a variety of commodities. Information is pulled from U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Auction Reports and USDA Commodity Reports.
  • Grow Bioplastics, the subject of a number of previous articles, has a proprietary biodegradable plastic that can be rolled as film or 3D-printed and tilled into the soil after use.
  • Geo Air which provides a faster, more precise way to identify mold in fields by using a drone to take airborne samples of the field. The resulting data are used to create a heat map, which identifies mold hot spots. This information allows growers to spot and treat problem areas instead of the entire crop, saving time, money, and crop production.
  • Tomboy Organic Skincare which formulates organic plant salves, skin care and makeup using herbs and roots from the native deciduous forests of the Southeast.
  • Urban Valley Farms which is developing a sustainable, economical and high-quality cricket-based protein powder.

The event begins at 11:30 a.m. For more details and to register, click here.



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