Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Food Waste Reduction Challenge: Business ModelsBack to all challenges
Abokichi is a food brand that is harnessing century-old practices from Japan to upcycle okara into innovative and delicious products. Okara, the nutritious pulp (50% fibre and 25% protein) remaining after tofu/soymilk production, is a staple in Asian cuisine but has yet to find a market in Canada. Over 7,000 tons are wasted annually across Canada.
[The finalist has withdrawn]
Blanc de gris developed a commercial mushroom growing process that coverts brewers’ spent grain for a substrate used to grow high-end, gourmet mushrooms. The company is currently developing a mushroom farm that is connected to a microbrewery so that brewers spent grain can be repurposed on site, rending transportation to landfill sites or other treatment sites unnecessary.
Circular Innovation Council offers the institutional, commercial, and industrial (IC&I) sector—Canada's largest generator of food waste—the ability to recover edible food and cost-effectively divert food waste otherwise lost to disposal through a co-operative buying financial model that can be replicated and scaled by communities across the country.
Food Cycle Science is partnering with small, rural, northern, and Indigenous communities on residential food waste diversion using their on-site FoodCycler technology. The FoodCycler transforms food waste into a nutrient-rich soil amendment in hours – keeping food waste out of landfills and reducing methane emissions caused by landfilled organics.
LOOP Synergies is an initiative powered by LOOP Mission which aims to facilitate and exponentially spread the use of upcycled ingredients in food manufacturing. LOOP creates fruit and vegetable based products (e.g., juices, purees and powder) that any food-manufacturer can easily use as ingredients in their production process, providing a cost-effective and easy to use solution to counter the challenges of working with discarded foods or by-products.
Outcast Foods obtains fresh “waste produce” and surplus produce from retailers, farmers, and agri-food businesses and converts it into whole plant powders and dehydrated products. The company is also developing solutions to deal with the complexities of sourcing, transporting and cleaning of waste stream food.
[The finalist has withdrawn]
Savormetrics provides artificial intelligence (AI)-driven sensor devices that not only detect, but predict defects, contaminants and shelf life, allowing for smarter growing, inventory movement, and processing. The devices allow food sector businesses to reduce food waste and save significant costs.
Still Good upcycles brewers' spent grain, a nutrient-rich wasted material derived from the brewing industry that is high in fibre and protein. In the process of innovating upcycled food products, the company is also developing advanced technologies for processing barley brewers’ spent grain.
The Station Food Company purchases produce that would otherwise be treated as waste from local farms, offering fair market value. The company upcycles this produce, creating value-add products such as mashed potatoes and sells them to institutional buyers.
Top Grade Ag is introducing affordable on-farm grain drying to enable the adoption of pro-active harvesting on every farm. The Top Grade Ag bin instrumentation and web-based app provides a real-time dashboard for drying and monitoring tough grain in bin. Not only does this approach reduce losses associated with field drying of broad acre crops, it also saves farmers money.
TriCycle uses a circular economy approach to breed highly nutritious edible insects (for human and animal consumption) by feeding them food waste. The insect frass is transformed into organic fertilizer.
Vivid Machines helps fruit growers “see the invisible” by providing them with a real-time sensor and computer vision system so they can see every plant in detail throughout the entire season. By providing insights enabling early intervention, Vivid helps growers better manage crop loads to prevent quality issues and reduce food loss.
Upcycling Okara, the pulp remaining after tofu or soymilk production, to divert food waste into nutritious flour, noodles and other baked goods.Learn more
Blanc de gris - Champignons frais
Uses brewer’s spent grain as a substrate for the cultivation of gourmet mushrooms.Learn more
Circular Innovation Council
Improving the collection and recovery of edible food waste from the institutional, commercial and industrial sectors.Learn more
CryoLogistics Refrigeration Technologies Ltd.
Developing autonomous refrigerated shipping containers powered by liquid CO2 with real-time remote monitoring and data logging capabilities.Learn more
Portable, rechargeable cold boxes that provide cooling through storage and transportation of food, for an extended duration without consuming electricity.Learn more
Food Cycle Sciences Corporation
Provides food waste recycling solutions to consumers, businesses, and municipalities to help them keep food waste out of landfills and reduce the greenhouse gas impact of food waste.Learn more
Food for Life Canada
Rescuing surplus food, sharing goodness with community, and returning inedible food and soiled cardboard to the earth through composting and vermiculture.Learn more
Green Circle Food Hub Ltd.
Selling 100% of food from small farms before it is harvested.Learn more
LOOP Juices Inc. / Jus LOOP Inc.
Aims to assist various food companies in acquiring upcycled fruits and vegetables by transforming these foods into easily usable ingredients that have a long shelf life, such as dehydrated powder, frozen cubes and pasteurized purees.Learn more
A vertical farm platform to convert existing warehouse space into automated indoor farms to grow sustainable, local food inside our communities all year-round.Learn more
Connects the supply chain into a digital ecosystem that enables transparency, traceability, trust and supports demand forecasting in order to optimize operations and minimize food waste.Learn more
Outcast Foods Inc.
Using fruit and vegetable surplus and by-products to manufacture dehydrated nutrient dense powders and pieces as well as its own sustainable plant-based supplements.Learn more
P&P Optica Inc.
Combines hyperspectral imaging and artificial intelligence in a unique way to assess food quality and find foreign materials like plastics, rubber and bone.Learn more
Satellite Farms Inc.
Streamlines the process of setting up, operating, and scaling technology-driven indoor farms in urban spaces.Learn more
Provides artificial intelligence-driven sensor systems that empower the food/ag industry to reduce waste and meet quality standards by growing, moving or processing inventory using predictive quality metrics.Learn more
Still Good Inc. /Toujours Bon Inc.
Technology that transforms brewers' spent grains into flour to be sold as well as used in the company’s current line of upcycled products.Learn more
Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery Inc.
FoodX Technologies, a subsidiary of SPUD.ca, has created an inventory control and quality assurance (ICQA) tool that leverages data and automation to manage food quality and reduce waste in grocery.Learn more
The Station Food Company (2019) Ltd.
Newport Station, NS
Upcycles unharvested produce into frozen vegetables and fruit puree scoops.Learn more
Top Grade Ag
In bin drying (IBD) monitoring system and grain storage monitoring system.Learn more
TrendiTech Inc. (formerly Trendy Vending Inc.)
A mobile processing unit, called BioTrim, turns misfit or excess food ingredients into a shelf-stable, nutrient-dense commodity.Learn more
Producing high-quality edible insects in a circular economy for human and animal consumption in order to transform food waste into sustainable proteins and fertilizers.Learn more
Vivid Machines Inc.
A spectral imaging sensor and computer vision system that captures plant data and provides insights on fruit/vegetable quality, pests, diseases, yield, and resource management.Learn more
Winnow Solutions Ltd.
Building artificial intelligence tools to help chefs run more profitable and sustainable kitchens by cutting food waste in half. A UK-based company that is setting up operations in Canada to scale its solution.Learn more
Wisely Foods Inc.
Taking a stand to reduce food waste by turning perfectly imperfect food into delicious and nutritious products.Learn more
Challenge details: Streams A and B
Who can apply?
- Businesses and social enterprises of any size
- Not-for-profit and charitable organizations
- Indigenous organizations and groups
- Post-secondary/academic institutions
- Individuals or group of individuals
International applicants with a Canadian partner or an ability to register to do business in Canada are encouraged to apply.
- Stage 1 – Concept Application Deadline: January 18, 2021
- Up to 30 Semi-Finalists Announced: Late Winter/Early Spring 2021
- Stage 2 Ends – Up to 12 Finalists Announced: Late Winter/Early Spring 2022
- Stage 3 Ends - Grand Prize Winners Announced: Early 2024
- Up to 30 Semi-Finalists will be selected in Stage 1 and will receive approximately $100,000
- Semi-Finalists will move into Stage 2 and compete for a chance to be a Finalist and receive approximately $400,000
- Up to 12 Finalists will compete in Stage 3 to win one of two Grand Prizes of up to $1,500,000
Note: The number of winners and prize amounts may vary depending on the applications received.