Grow-NY Food and Ag Summit to Award $3 Million in Prize Money to Promote the Future of Food, Agriculture, and Sustainable Technologies

Vinyards along a lake in upstate New York.

Grow-NY Food and Ag Summit to Award $3 Million in Prize Money to Promote the Future of Food, Agriculture, and Sustainable Technologies

This year’s Summit focuses on the Grow-NY Effect, cultivating innovations that have the power to address economic health, climate sustainability, and food resources for the world’s growing population.

Grow-NY, the largest global food and agriculture business competition, will host its two-day Food & Ag Summit on Tuesday, Nov. 14 and Wednesday, Nov. 15 in Binghamton, New York. Attendees have the option to participate in the Summit in-person or virtually. Twenty startup companies from around the world will participate in a live pitch competition, where seven winners will be selected to receive a combined total of $3 million in prize money, including a top award of $1 million. The Summit will feature an Ecosystem Expo and educational Symposium, which will include thought-provoking panel discussions and fireside chats with industry leaders, startup founders, and key players in food and agriculture. The Summit is designed for startups, companies, investors, resource providers, researchers, entrepreneurs, and students interested in food production, sustainability, and environmental growth.

Registration is now open. All-access, in-person admission is $65 and $25 for students. Group discounts for school trips or community organizations are available, and no one will be turned away due to the inability to pay. The full pitch competition and symposium panels will also be broadcast live online, and virtual attendance is free of charge.

This year’s Summit Symposium amplifies the Grow-NY Effect, demonstrating that although the Grow-NY region exists in upstate New York, the technology and innovations are far-reaching and have long-lasting impacts on the broader food and agriculture industry.

The Symposium sessions will offer practical advice to startups while exploring the biggest issues facing our food systems, such as the benefits of digital agriculture on small farms, innovations in the dairy industry, and the impact of climate friendly technology systems. In addition, there will be an Ecosystem Expo featuring organizations that support the thriving innovation ecosystem in New York state, creating networking opportunities for all operators in the food and ag sectors.

To register for the Summit and learn more about the competition and its finalists, visit The symposium sessions, which will occur on both days of the Grow-NY Summit in between the dynamic, live finalist pitches, can be viewed here.

This year, 323 startups from around the world applied for the competition. The 20 finalists were selected in August and have since been matched with a mentor who will lead them through the business development phase of their startup plan. Each finalist focused on exploring the regional resources available to help grow and scale their startups in upstate New York and ultimately support their business pitches. During the live pitch, each finalist will receive 10 minutes to present their business plans, with the remaining 10 minutes set aside for questions from the panel of judges.

“Through the Grow-NY Effect, upstate New York’s food and farming community has made an impression on a global audience as an ecosystem committed to innovation, economic development, and resilient food systems,” said Jenn Smith, Program Director, Grow-NY. “There is no better way to join the conversation about the future of food production and the potential of the upstate New York region than to attend this year’s Summit.”

The awards ceremony will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 15 at the SUNY Broome Culinary & Event Center, during which the winners of the $1 million top prize, two $500,000 prizes, and four $250,000 prizes will be revealed. Tickets to the awards ceremony and reception, which is just a short walk from the main summit venue, are an additional $50.


About Empire State Development

Empire State Development (ESD) promotes a vigorous and growing state economy, encourages business investment and job creation, and supports diverse, prosperous local economies across New York State through the efficient use of loans, grants, tax credits, real estate development, marketing and other forms of assistance. To learn more about ESD visit

About the Cornell Center for Regional Economic Advancement

The Cornell Center for Regional Economic Advancement (CREA) supports economic growth in Upstate New York through entrepreneurship and innovation. We help people advance ideas that will create jobs in all fields in our region, to enrich the area’s economic diversity. To learn more, visit

Media Inquiries:

Nicole Sheldon, [email protected], 585-451-4590

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