Second Annual International Food+City Challenge Prize Startup to Award $50,000; Submission Process Opens September 1, 2015

Formerly Known as The Food Challenge Prize, The Food+City Challenge Prize Seeks Innovations in the Global Food System

(AUSTIN, Texas) — If you have an idea for a business, product or process that will change the way the world feeds itself, Food+City, formerly known as The Food Lab at The University of Texas at Austin, announces the launch of its second annual early-stage startup competition, The Food+City Challenge Prize (formerly The Food Challenge Prize). The competition seeks to identify ideas that uncover lasting ways to improve logistics and feed cities around the world. Building upon last year’s success, Food+City sponsors are increasing cash awards from a total of $30,000 to $50,000 in 2016. Submissions are accepted September 1 – October 15, 2015, and are open to everyone at local, national and international levels. Last year, startups from Massachusetts to California, students and non-academic, established entrepreneurs, entered the Prize competition. This year, organizers expect an even more diverse group of entries.

Austin-based Food+City seeks ideas that not only result in a great product, but also impact and improve how food supply chains function. The goal of the challenge is to encourage innovation in food production, distribution, packaging and consumption. Businesses or ideas of particular interest include the following objectives:
· Lessen food waste
· Increase the supply of affordable and nutritious food
· Provide food that meets personalized health needs
· Improve the transport and distribution of food into and through urban populations around the globe
· Utilize new storage materials and processes that minimize waste.

Important Dates:
September 1, 2015 – Submission process opens at
October 15, 2015 – Submission process ends
November 1, 2015 – 20 finalists announced
November 15, 2015 – Finalists paired with mentors
February 5, 2016 – Bootcamp on The University of Texas at Austin campus
February 6, 2016 – Showcase Day at the McComb’s Business School at the University of Texas at Austin. Winners will be announced.

“By encouraging entrepreneurs to find new solutions to problems within our food system, the Food+City Challenge encourages a cross pollination of ideas not commonly found in food startup discussions. The Food Lab at UT focused on feeding our cities; Food+City expands upon the Food Lab’s original vision and growth, engaging in diverse topics and innovations to feed cities and increase sustainability of food systems,” said Dr. Robyn Metcalfe, founder and director of Food+City. “Our food system is more urban and more global than ever before. We’re going to uncover what’s missing in our current food systems, particularly around how we feed cities around the world. We’ll do so by challenging and testing all assumptions, beliefs and technologies – that’s exactly what this challenge is designed to do.”

Finalists will be notified in early November. At that time, they will be paired with industry mentors who will guide the strengthening of business plans and the development of prototypes for 13 weeks. Winning teams will be announced following public showcase and a fast-pitch process at the Showcase Day, February 6, 2016, in Austin.

For more information on Food+City and the Food+City Challenge Prize including submission details, please visit the website.

About Food+City

Food+City, a 501c3 non-profit, grew out of The Food Lab at the University of Texas at Austin, and is directed by Dr. Robyn Metcalfe in Austin. Food+City is a platform for bold exploration of the global food system; it provokes fresh perspectives on the realities of how we feed cities, inspiring and fostering action. The Food+City stories, told in many forms, will raise awareness of the opportunities for improvement in our food systems and uncover the insights that will shape how we make our world sustainable. For more information on Food+City, please visit Follow and like on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Lisa O’Neill 512-494-6178