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We are happy to announce the awards for the Elevator Pitch Contest on Pandemic-Proof Innovations in partnership with the Micronutrient Forum 5th Global Conference, CONNECTED. As we are all living through this current pandemic, we know it is hard for everyone, but at the same time, a crisis often provokes innovation, and that is just what our finalists have done. Selected from a pool of 54 applicants from 11 countries, these four entrepreneurs delivered compelling pitches for their innovative solutions and competed for a grand prize of US$5,000 and an Audience Award worth US$1,000.

Grand Prize Winner

The four contestants brought attractive solutions making it a difficult decision for the judges, but we are pleased to share the grand prize winner is Wilvenna Añora, the co-founder of AtoANI. Wilvie is a young Philippino entrepreneur, who has made farming a lucrative and reliable livelihood option. By integrating digital technologies to bypass middle men and adopting a unique model of produce-to-demand, she has drastically limited food losses and wastage and increased farmers income. Wilvie has transitioned farmers from monocropping to growing a variety of fruits and vegetables, thus improving the dietary diversity in Philippines, but more importantly, among the farming communities she works with. Wilvie is very passionate about sustainable living and started this venture with her family in 2014. 

Audience Choice Award

The ‘Audience Choice Award’ goes to Yutaro Oka, CEO of NutriPride and a former UN WFP Ghana officer. Yutaro is improving nutrition among school going children in Ghana, one school at a time. He helps schools provide healthy and nutritious meals by procuring ingredient packages directly from local farmers and wholesalers according to the meal plans created with local dietician. He is very familiar with the business model as his family has been operating a school meal business in Japan for three generations. Well done, Yutaro!

We wish Yutaro and Wilvie, along with Bello and Issac the best of luck and much success in the future!

Thank you to everyone who participated, and please join us for our next pitch competition in partnership with AGRF on December 4th – it promises to be exciting!