Western Growers seeks ag tech startups for $30,000 scholarship

November 21, 2016

The application period for Western Growers Center for Innovation & Technology (WGCIT) Scholarship Program is now open. The scholarship program provides the winner with residence at an agtech incubator designed to assist start-up companies who are developing agricultural technologies.

The scholarship program was developed as a result of a $30,000 grant awarded to the Western Growers Foundation from Wells Fargo Bank in July to establish a scholarship fund for agtech startups. Western Growers Foundation will grant up to 10 scholarships, each worth up to $3,000.

Each scholarship will underwrite the cost of a “hot desk” (non-reserved workstation) or defray the costs of a desk within the WGCIT for one year.

Recipients will receive all the benefits of being a Western Growers’ member and resident of the center, including access to prominent networking opportunities with leading fresh produce companies; ample exposure to agricultural-related organizations throughout California, Arizona and Colorado; training and mentorship from industry professionals, including legal, HR, insurance, financial and communications experts; routine classes and workshops designed to provide startups with the knowledge and customer connections they need to bring their technology from development to production.

Scholarship recipients will also be offered the amenities of a traditional office, including internet and phones, printers and copiers, meeting and conference rooms, and cutting-edge technology to live stream events and presentations.

Scholarships are open to any individual or company that is working on ideas or technology that will assist the fresh fruit, nut and vegetable industry to produce more food using fewer inputs and with less waste. All startups looking to apply must submit the following:

  1. biographies of the management team;
  2. a business plan
  3. description of the company’s desire to be in the WGCIT, technology being developed/offered and the potential benefits to the fresh produce industry
  4. proposed performance metrics to evaluate progress
  5. a recommendation letter from a Western Growers member company

For the full scholarship requirements and additional information on how to apply, click here.

All applications must be submitted to Hank Giclas at hgiclas@wga.com and received by Friday, Dec. 30, at 5 p.m. PST.