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Barilla seeks to collaborate with restaurants in 8-week Good Food Makers challenge


PHOTO COURTESY BARILLA

Parma, Italy – Italian food company Barilla invites restaurants from around the world apply to work directly with its teams to develop innovative business solutions as part of its fourth Good Food Makers global accelerator challenge program.

For this edition of the challenge, called BLU1877, Barilla Venture Group will work with San Francisco-based incubator KitchenTown on four challenges:

  • Circular Economy: solutions to upcycle three specific side streams — pasta regrind, wheat bran, and bread crust — in order to create a healthy, safe, and nutritious circular food system.
  • Better Food Delivery: creative solutions in preparation, delivery logistics, automation, packaging, recipe development, and more to deliver high-quality meal experiences – in particular for pasta – through new restaurant and delivery channels.
  • Digital Nutrition Guides: digital platforms to co-develop transparent, honest and accurate guides for nutrition, well-being, sustainability, or even just what to put in your shopping cart.
  • Easy Meal Routines: better-for-you meal services, kits, or products to meet busy eaters where they are without sacrificing on nutrition or sustainability.

One start-up will be selected for each challenge area and work directly with a custom-built team of Barilla experts for eight weeks to create actionable solutions and implement them in real time. They will also receive a $10,000 grant to use during the program to advance its own business growth.

“One of the bright spots of the past year has been the flood of food innovators, and we can’t wait to unlock new talents and technologies while fostering a more resilient food system,” said Michela Petronio, vice-president of BLU1877.

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KitchenTown CEO, Rusty Schwartz, says this is right in line with what start-ups need right now: “As an incubator, we have watched entrepreneurs first-hand pivot their struggles into creative ideas that now need some nurturing and resources to become scalable businesses,” said Schwartz. “Good Food Makers is the perfect program for those hungry to make an impact, and for a company like Barilla to gain fresh insights and energy.”

Businesses may enter now through August. Criteria include:

· a specialization in one of the four challenge areas
· ability to demonstrate transformative ideas and approaches to supporting a better food system
· proven business results

The eight-week program will kick off in September and take place virtually, with the possibility for in-person collaboration depending on the location of teams and current COVID-19 public health regulations. For more information and to apply for the program visit goodfoodmakers.net.