What to expect from this year’s Challenge

Our Feed the Future Challenge is a Lely innovation initiative designed to connect with startups in the agritech industry. It’s all about revolutionizing the dairy industry with new technologies and providing startups with access to the sector, through potential investment and collaboration with Lely. Does that sound like something your startup would benefit from? Apply here.  We are very excited for the upcoming Feed the Future Challenge 2021, so let’s dive right in and take a look at the program! 

When and where?

The Feed the Future Challenge program was designed with the busy lives of innovators in mind! That means two things: it is fully online, but not full-time, so you can participate remotely and commit to both the program as well as your day-to-day operations. We respect and understand that you have important work that also needs tending to alongside the program, so you can expect to commit about 8-10 hours per week, with each activity spread out over the course of the week. The program runs for a total of four weeks in September.

Who can join?

We’re excited to meet you! While only one person will join to represent your team (the applicant), other team members are welcome to join any program workshops that are especially relevant for them.

Lely Expert Sessions & Meetings with our C-Level Executives

Pitching a pilot proposition for a startup-corporate collaboration is not just pitching your business – you’ll need to clearly explain why and how you intend to collaborate. In order to get you prepped to pitch, we will hold expert sessions over the course of the four-week program. This is where you will receive feedback on your business, and Lely experts will help you better understand how to improve your pilot proposal. These sessions will also be moments for the experts to assess how Lely could benefit from working with you. 

In addition to meetings with Lely experts, we will also introduce you to our wider network. You’ll have the chance to meet with C-level executives from Lely, which will help you prepare to pitch to other big players in the agtech industry at the finals event.


In addition to expert sessions, you will also attend three workshops. First, our pilot training workshop will help you better understand the crucial elements of a pilot collaboration, including costs, what to expect, and the benefits of having a detailed pilot proposal. We’ll give you practical tools to work with including a pilot proposal template to help you prepare. 

You’ll also attend a proposition training workshop. This is similar to pitch training, but with a different pitch canvas. You’ll learn how to tailor your pitch so that it goes beyond presenting your product and traction, and explains why your collaboration makes sense with Lely. This will prepare you for Finals Day on October 7th. 

Next, you’ll have a workshop on working with corporates. You’ll learn how to assess what type of collaboration a company is looking for, whether you are a fit, and how to set expectations when working with a corporate partner.

Last but not least, you’ll get to join an “Ask Me Anything” session to learn how startups have successfully teamed up to run a pilot with Lely.

Community Activity

We’re looking forward to introducing you to the Lely team, but we also believe there is value in learning from one another. That’s why we’ve organized a community activity! During this peer-to-peer social session, you’ll get to connect with other startups in the group in order to network, share experiences and learn together.

If you have any questions about the program or how to apply, please send an email to Zara from Rockstart (zara@rockstart.com). Apply now and seize your chance to collaborate with Lely! We look forward to meeting you.

Let's connect!