Inaugural Research Innovation Festival generates agri-business buzz

Posted on Friday, March 26th, 2021


The first annual Research Innovation Festival will be a springtime celebration of cutting-edge agri-technology businesses that have their roots in the University of Guelph’s research community.

Everything from advanced nanotechnology that helps fight disease and viruses to a convenient online education platform for busy veterinarians will be on display.

“We’re thrilled to be able to showcase the incredibly innovative people and start-ups that have come from the university and to help them scale up by encouraging partnerships with industry, government, investors and others,” says Dana McCauley, Director of New Venture Creation in the University’s Research Innovation Office. “As Ontario emerges from the pandemic, it’ll be more important than ever to encourage these globally relevant concepts and bolster the provincial economy.”

Every day from May 10th to 15th, new stories and videos will be posted highlighting the many innovative companies that had their genesis in the university’s Gryphon’s LAAIR (Leading to the Accelerated Adoption of Innovative Research) program. The program is funded by the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance, a collaboration between the university and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Everyone is invited to check out all the content on Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and the university’s website.

Five corporations are in the hunt at this year’s Gryphon’s LAAIR Pitch Competition, with prizes totaling $17,000. They’ll be making their pitches to an international panel of investment and industry leaders, who will be awarding the top prize of $10,000.

Starting at noon on Friday, May 15th , everyone will have a chance to vote online for one of the five contestants for the People’s Choice Award – worth $2,500. Voting will close at 12:59 p.m. EDT on May 19th.

The big finale will go live online at 1:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday May 19th, when the LAAIR pitch competition awards will be presented. Dan Clapson, founder of Eat North, and a popular Youtube show called Variety Pack will be the host. Participants are invited to network after the main event at 3:00 p.m.

Registration is open now for the showcase and pitch competition. Get your ticket today!


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