Lineage Launches Global Innovation Challenge to Tackle Food Waste in the Food Chain

Lineage, the world’s largest climate-controlled warehouse real estate investment trust, has launched the Food Chain Innovation Challenge, a pioneering initiative aimed at combating food waste, particularly post-harvest loss. This global competition invites students and startups worldwide to develop and pitch breakthrough solutions to one of the most critical global challenges: food waste.

The challenge will culminate in three major events across the globe: London (UK) on November 14, Amsterdam (Netherlands) on November 19, and San Francisco (USA) also on November 19. Participants are encouraged to present innovative solutions that can effectively reduce post-harvest food spoilage through scalable and affordable methods, thereby enhancing food security, quality, safety, and market access across different regions, from mature to emerging and developing markets.

Each regional event will award cash prizes to winners, and a grand prize winner, selected from the regional champions, will be announced in December. The grand prize includes admission to an incubation program designed to support business development and scale-up of their solution.

Participants will pitch their ideas to a distinguished panel of judges, focusing on four key areas:

  1. Reducing Food Waste: Introducing technologies and strategies to minimize food losses from farm to market.
  2. Innovative Food Preservation Techniques: Proposing novel methods to extend food shelf life and decrease spoilage.
  3. Access to Nutritious Food: Enhancing food distribution logistics to increase nutritious food availability in underserved areas.
  4. Data-Driven Insights and Analysis: Utilizing analytics and IoT to optimize supply chains and reduce waste.

Greg Lehmkuhl, President and CEO of Lineage, emphasized the urgent need highlighted by the United Nations Environment Programme’s 2024 Food Waste Index report, which revealed that 1.05 billion tons of food were wasted in 2022 alone, enough to feed billions. He underscored the potential impact of reducing food waste on global food security, particularly for the 783 million people worldwide facing undernourishment.

“At Lineage, we are dedicated to driving innovation throughout the global food supply chain,” stated Lehmkuhl. “Through our Food Chain Innovation Challenge, we aim to foster solutions that not only tackle food waste but also advance sustainability. We eagerly anticipate the emergence of new ideas and their transformation into effective strategies.”

The Food Chain Innovation Challenge underscores Lineage’s commitment to sustainability by enhancing global food storage, transportation, and distribution practices. To participate or learn more, visit the challenge portal here. For insights into the 2023 Hackathon, a precursor to the Innovation Challenge held in Amsterdam, watch the video here, and listen to last year’s winner for inspiration and insight into the impact of winning this prestigious competition.

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