Generation Food

Generation Food

A new movement stimulates innovation and entrepreneurship in agriculture and food.

In Generation Food various organisations join their network and expertise to stimulate innovation and give new entrepreneurs a boost.

Generation Food wants to activate new entrepreneurs and increase their chances of success (SDG 8: decent work and economic growth). With a focus on sustainability and nutrition, we do so with a view to the future (SDG 11: sustainable cities & SDG 12: responsible production and consumption).

Generation Food stems from Leuven's local food strategy and implements one of the 7 strategic objectives: stimulating innovation for sustainable agriculture and nutrition. With bottom-up (social) innovative projects we want to make the food system in and around Leuven more sustainable and fairer. The role of a new (young) generation of starting entrepreneurs will be crucial.

How?

We offer a training programme consisting of hackathons, a master class and a test lab for starting entrepreneurs who are looking for inspiration, who want to develop their own ideas or who want to experiment with food for the future.

A trajectory through 3 events

Potential entrepreneurs go through different stages, from generating new fresh ideas to testing innovative concepts in practice. In addition, we also organise three forums in parallel, aimed at the wider public and strengthening the entrepreneurs. During these forums, the public interacts with entrepreneurs about sustainable innovation and new business models.

  1. Hackathon: During a two-day event the participants will work on concrete food challenges and innovative solutions. At the end of the hackathon they pitch these ideas to a jury.
  2. Masterclass: The selected ideas will be further developed. Together with experts, these future entrepreneurs will be helped with their sustainable business plan.
  3. Testlab: hands on. Entrepreneurs carry out a beta test of their concept, product or service. Pop-up, showcase, try-out,...

Promising initiatives can then be transferred to other existing incubators, pitch contests, business coaches, etc. The next steps are usually the search for start-up capital, legal support, coaching... There are many organizations with good services for this, Generation Food connects and refers to them. We also remain a point of contact after the Generation Food projects.

Our ambition?

Generation Food is a test in Leuven that we - when validated - want to roll out in other cities within our Food Smart Cities network. The need for people to innovate and do business is a global challenge, and the role they play in producing and providing sustainable, fair and healthy food for all can not be underestimated.

Rikolto is fulfilling this strategic objective by setting up a food and agriculture pre-incubator in Leuven, called Generation Food. Different organisations have joined the collaboration: The Province of Flemish Brabant, Boerenbond (the Flemish farmers union), PROEF, the City of Leuven, University Leuven, EIT Food, KBC, UCLL and Rikolto. Together we try to look at today's challenges from a holistic perspective.

Visit the Generation Food website

Rikolto

Rikolto

Rikolto (formerly VECO) means 'harvest' in Esperanto. On the one hand, Rikolto coaches farmers' organisations to become strong business partners. On the other hand, Rikolto, together with farmers, companies, scientists and governments, is harvesting new ideas to feed a growing world population in a sustainable way.

Province of Flemish Brabant

Province of Flemish Brabant

The province of Flemish Brabant is a form of local government that links the 65 municipalities of the area and the Flemish and federal governments. The provincial council implements and develops economic, social and cultural policy, coordinates actions of local actors and funds projects of regional importance.

KU Leuven

KU Leuven

Situated in Belgium, in the heart of Western Europe, KU Leuven has been a centre of learning for nearly six centuries. Today, it is Belgium's largest university and, founded in 1425, one of the oldest and most renowned universities in Europe. As a leading European research university and co-founder of the League of European Research Universities (LERU), KU Leuven offers a wide variety of international master’s programmes, all supported by high-quality, innovative, interdisciplinary research.

UCLL

UCLL

UC Leuven-Limburg (UCLL) is one of the major universities of applied sciences in Flanders with over 14,000 students and 9 campuses.

Boerenbond

Boerenbond

Boerenbond is the largest trade association for farmers and horticulturists in Flanders and German-speaking Belgium. The activities are situated in five areas: advocacy, training and information, services, representation and cooperation in production, supply and marketing.

EIT Food

EIT Food

EIT Food is Europe’s leading food innovation initiative, working to make the food system more sustainable, healthy and trusted by consumers.

City of Leuven

City of Leuven

KBC

KBC

KBC is one of the leading banks in Belgium and an important financial player in the agricultural and horticultural sector.

Province of Flemish Brabant Climate Neutral

€ 70000.00

The province of Flemish Brabant will invest 70,000 euros over two years in the start-up of Generation Food.