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In October 2018, FAO and the Federal Government of Switzerland launched the International Innovation Award for Sustainable Food and Agriculture, calling on individuals, private companies or institutions to submit proposals.

The call for applications closed on 28 February 2019. We would like to thank everyone who applied this year. We received over 400 applications from all over the world and our team of experts are already evaluating them based on a set of general criteria including quality and merit of the innovation, its potential benefit, impact and sustainability, scalability and value for money.

Winners will be announced at the FAO Awards ceremony on 26 June 2019. Stay tuned!

Category A

The Award for Digitalization and Innovation for Sustainable Food Systems (Category A) recognizes innovations that impact more than one level of supply chain and strengthen the link between farmers and consumers.


Imaflora is commended for successfully creating a digital platform and brand “Origens Brasil” that links indigenous groups in Amazonia to new markets.

The platform increases transparency by minimizing the need for intermediaries, enabling tracking of transactions from producers to buyers, and providing information on the origin of products.

Launched in 2016, it connects over 1,500 producers, 14 companies and 40 local organizations, fosters the protection of natural resources and the Amazon, and values the participation of women and youth.

Practical Action is recognized for empowering landless and marginalized farmers through “sandbar cropping” and connecting growers to buyers both in domestic and export markets.

Since 2005, Practical Action has reached over 20,000 households, providing access to over 4,000 hectares of barren and transitional riverbeds for the production of over 100,000 metric tons of pumpkins.

This innovative approach has improved the livelihoods of people affected by erratic weather patterns, especially women, and preserved water through improved irrigation techniques.

Shortlisted Candidates

Binkabi, United Kingdom

Binkabi is a blockchain-based platform for issuing, trading and financing commodities. It offers direct, peer-to-peer trading of harvested produce between farmers and aggregators, processors, and exporters, allowing a fairer profit distribution for farmers and other players along the chain.

East Africa Fruits, Tanzania

East Africa Fruits, Tanzania

East Africa Fruits uses technology to collect information on harvest trends and match supply with demand, meaning that the farmers they purchase from in Tanzania benefit from reduced post-harvest losses and access to markets, and consumers gain access to fresh produce.

Solar Freeze, Kenya

Solar Freeze, Kenya

Solar Freeze provides an affordable solar-powered cold storage rental service that can be booked and paid for via SMS by smallholder farmers, extending the freshness of their produce.

Category B

The Award for innovations that empower youth in agriculture and food systems (Category B) recognizes innovations that empower youth (under 35) in agriculture and food systems.


The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is awarded for establishing an agribusiness incubation program – IITA Youth Agripreneurs.

This program has strengthened youth participation in agricultural transformation by connecting trained young agripreneurs to start-up capital and providing pilot enterprises with new skills to establish successful rural- or urban-based businesses.

It has contributed to improving livelihoods, incomes and food security through improved value chain activities and increased agricultural productivity.

Shortlisted Candidates

Farmerline Ltd, Ghana

Farmerline Ltd, Ghana

The CocoaLink Smart App targets young farmers in Ghana (18-35 years old) and stimulates youth interest in agriculture by providing sound information on effective climate-smart agriculture and social practices, as well as capacity building, to increase cocoa productivity.

International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), Kenya

International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), Kenya

The International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology’s agribusiness incubator program provides youth with the resources and skills to set up successful honey and silk production practices and helps them to gain access to financial services and markets.

Ubiriki, Peru

Ubiriki, Peru

Ubiriki is a cooperative of young producers that produce coffee seedlings resistant to 'roya amarilla' coffee rust, provide technical assistance and hold capacity development workshops on technologies that reduce mortality rates in coffee plantations.

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