Three winning companies were selected for the 2023 THRIVE | Shell Climate-Smart Agriculture Challenge, which aims to identify and support top start-up and scale-up innovators who are driving the global transformation to climate-smart agriculture practices. In addition to two Shell GameChanger Winners and a Scale-Up Winner, awards were also given in Female Founder and People’s Choice categories.
he focus areas for the Challenge centered around three key themes:
- Enhance land: Solutions that promote carbon sequestration and avoid emissions while
improving soil health.
- Connect farms: Solutions to improve farm connectivity to access carbon markets and
- Measure soil: Solutions that measure and quantify soil carbon, soil health, and
greenhouse gas emissions.
Shell GameChanger Awards were presented to Ireland based Silicate Carbon, the first company in the world to leverage the carbon-removal potential of waste concrete as an enhanced weathering material, and U.S.-based Gazelle Ecosolutions, which is restoring grasslands to improve their carbon sequestration potential and fight climate change.
Canadian startup Lucent Bio — upcycle food processing co-products into micronutrient fertilizer that increases yields, improves soil health and increases soil carbon — received the Scale-Up award.
Awards include up to $100k in non-dilutive funding and acceptance into the Shell GameChanger program, acceptance into the THRIVE Accelerator Programs, and the opportunity to be considered for additional investment from Shell Ventures.
The winners were showcased over the weekend at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas. In all, there were almost 400 applicants from 63 countries. The winners also participated in a panel discussion with representatives from SVG Ventures|THRIVE and Shell.
The other recognition awards went to Israeli company Albo Climate, the recipient of the Female Founder Award, and True Algae, the People’s Choice Award winner.
“Reducing emissions from the agricultural sector is one of our most pressing challenges.” explains Julie Ferland, Vice-President for Innovation Excellence at Shell. “We are pleased to have partnered with THRIVE and identified game-changing innovations in this sector which Shell can meaningfully help de-risk. This decade is critical to advance the technology that will help reduce the sector’s emissions and enable agriculture as an important sink to collect and store carbon dioxide.”