Vidzeme Living Lab: Food Innovation Hackathon will look for innovative solutions to challenges around sustainable food system

Vidzeme Living Lab: Food Innovation Hackathon will look for innovative solutions to challenges around sustainable food system

Thursday, November 24, 2022

From 25 to 26 November, the Vidzeme Planning Region is organizing the Vidzeme Food Innovation Hackathon, which will last for 24 hours. It will take place in Valmiera, Latvia.

One of the many initiatives taking place in the Vidzeme Living Lab is the Vidzeme Food Innovation Hackathon. It is developed in the chosen pilot territory, the Vidzeme region, in collaboration with the Latvian partners of CITIES2030, the Vidzeme Planning Region (P24), and the Latvian Rural Forum (P25).

Circular economy and healthy, sustainable food are two of the five guiding principles that are mirrored in the hackathon challenges, and they are also two of the major elements of the CITIES2030 project. Entrepreneurs and students who are participating in the Hackathon will work on the challenge solutions with the assistance of knowledgeable mentors. The Hackathon provides a fantastic platform for idea generation, consultation, and assistance from mentors who are authorities in their disciplines. Food technologists as well as professionals in business, economics, and innovation will serve as the Hackathon’s mentors. Participants will also benefit from the assistance of Vidzeme Planning Region economist and CITIES2030 expert Irīna Kulitāne.

Several Vidzeme business owners are seeking solutions to handle by-products and waste materials in food production processes more intelligently. These business owners have presented their concerns to the Hackathon. The most crucial queries are: how to avoid waste and instead recycle and reuse; how to transform by-products into new products; and how to do this in the most advantageous method. The production of food today must also take into account evolving consumer preferences, health, sustainability, and environmental friendliness.

The goal of the 24-hour ideas marathon is to create solutions that would increase the capacity of food producers in the Vidzeme region to produce and distribute sustainable food products on the market, thus creating prerequisites for access to healthy food for every resident of Vidzeme, strengthening local producers and processors, as well as strengthening short food supply chains,” emphasizes Lienīte Priedāja-Klepere, project manager for CITIES2030 in the Vidzeme Planning Region.

At the conclusion of the Hackathon, the panel will determine whether the winning concept addresses any issues facing the food sector and whether the selected approach is creative, has the potential to be exported, and has a distinct market niche.

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