Climate Robotics, a developer of mobile biochar production systems, has emerged as the winner of the 2023 AgSharks Pitch Competition, earning an equity investment offer of $250,000. The event, hosted by Western Growers and S2G Ventures, showcased innovative solutions to address pressing issues in agriculture.
Biochar, a carbon-negative soil amendment made from waste biomass, has shown potential in reversing global climate change. When applied to agricultural soils, biochar enhances crop yield, water retention, and nutrient retention. The production of biochar globally has the capacity to sequester up to two billion tons of atmospheric CO2 in agricultural soils annually, while also generating valuable carbon removal credits. Climate Robotics’ trailer-mounted systems allow for low-cost, distributed production of high-value biochar directly on the farm.
“This win is an immense opportunity for Climate Robotics to leverage existing resources and make a significant impact in sequestering billions of tons of CO2 on farms,” stated Jason Aramburu, Co-Founder and CEO of Climate Robotics. He expressed gratitude towards events like the AgSharks Competition for supporting the scaling of innovative technologies that contribute to decarbonizing the atmosphere and improving soil health.
Apart from the monetary investment, Climate Robotics will receive international recognition, mentoring from Western Growers and S2G Ventures, access to farm acreage for technology piloting, and exposure to a network of leading fresh produce companies associated with Western Growers.
The AgSharks Pitch Competition demonstrated the importance of collaboration between the agricultural industry and technology innovators. “By working in partnership with Western Growers, we seek to accelerate the adoption of new technologies that can solve real-world problems and work in tandem with the industry,” remarked Audre Kapacinskas, Principal at S2G Ventures. Collaboration between organizations like Western Growers and S2G Ventures is crucial in directing capital towards its highest and best use.
The competition also showcased two other finalists who presented their technology solutions. Cultiva, a leader in plant cuticle health technology, offers products that protect specialty crops from environmental stresses. Provision, on the other hand, simplifies compliance for growers through cloud software. Both finalists received recognition for their innovative solutions.
The AgSharks Pitch Competition, held during the 97th WG Annual Meeting, demonstrated the immense potential of technology in addressing challenges faced by the agriculture industry. The event provided a platform for agtech innovators to demonstrate their inventions to an audience of fresh produce farmers and industry leaders.