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Innovation in Food Security Venture Creation Weekend, 20-22 March 2020

Do you want to transform the lives of people and make a positive impact on the environment? Do you have a novel idea or application in global food security? Are you interested in getting involved in entrepreneurship?

Kickstart your entrepreneurial career and start developing your venture at the next Venture Creation Weekend on 20-22 March 2020 at Cambridge Judge Business School. It's a chance to test your business ideas relevant to food security, build a team and pitch to investors within 50 hours!

Our current food system is under pressure and needs to change. While one in eight people suffers from malnutrition, one third of the food produced in the world goes to waste. Meanwhile, the population continues to increase and climate conditions for crop plants are changing.

Food security, as explained by the World Food Programme, is about the "availability and adequate access at all times to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life". In practice this means that a vast range of parties are stakeholders. It ranges from those creating policies to those researching and creating the latest biotechnology in labs to entrepreneurs creating innovative ventures which tackle the wide range of problems facing the world.

The upcoming Venture Creation Weekend is organised in partnership with Illumina and supported by Cambridge Food Security Forum. We recommend and encourage participants to focus on key areas around Food Security such as:

  • food biotechnology
  • big data and AI applications
  • crop management
  • genetic improvement in livestock
  • agrigenomics applications (i.e. food safety and conservation)
  • nutrition
  • food waste

Bring your novel ideas that help to eradicate poverty through technology, genomics and big data applications.

Why attend the Innovation in Food Security VCW?

It's a chance to create, test and validate your Innovation in Food Security venture idea or application with industry experts. You can get inspiration from your peers and mentors, learn the basics of building a business and how to collaborate with others in a team environment. Some of you can go 'founder-dating' i.e. use the weekend to match up with one or more co-founders for your business. All participants will work together in teams on customer development, business models, pitching practice and building product prototypes (where appropriate). The most popular ideas are pitched to a panel of judges formed of industry leaders and investors who can provide expert feedback and analysis.

At the end of the VCW, you will have developed your entrepreneurial skills, kick-started your venture, enjoyed the buzz of exploring and creating ideas; and potentially be ready to launch your business together with a talented team.

In addition, one or more of the participating teams will be invited for an interview to join our Accelerate Cambridge incubator programme delivered by the CJBS Entrepreneurship Centre. Please note that successful application is dependent on whether the team meets the selection criteria.

When is it?

The Innovation in Food Security VCW starts promptly at 18:00 on Friday 20 March (registrations from 17:30) and ends at 19:00 on Sunday 22 March.

The exact dates and times are:

Fri 20 March 2019, 18:00-23:00

Sat 21 March 2019, 08:30-23:00

Sun 22 March 2019, 08:30-19:00 (followed by a dinner* from 19:00 to close)

* Please note there is a special closing dinner following the final pitches to celebrate the achievements of the weekend.

The venue is Cambridge Judge Business School, Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1AG. View our location and directions

How to apply

Applications are open now until Thursday 19 March 2020.

Standard ticket £60

Student tickets £40

Early bird discount 10% discount is available on advanced bookings until 24 February 2020

This fee includes all sessions, dinner and refreshments that are provided as part of the VCW. Please advise in your application if you are staying for the closing dinner. Overnight accommodation is not included.

Terms and conditions apply. Please email to find out more.

If you have any questions, please email

Book now

Register by 19 March 2020.

Earlybird (standard): £54

Earlybird (student): £36

Early bird discount available until 24 February 2020.

Book online

in partnership with

Illumina logo

with support from

Cambridge Food Security Forum logo

Contact us

Tel: +44 (0)1223 760959