about the

thought for food
global summit

Thought For Food (TFF) is the world’s leading platform for Next Generation Innovation and Collaboration to address global food and nutrition security.

Our movement brings together bold, unconventional thinkers and doers from all disciplines and parts of the globe, who are dedicated to developing breakthrough solutions to one of the biggest questions facing our future:

how do we feed
9+ billion people
by 2050?

At this year’s TFF Global Summit, we explored some of the important trends and disruptions affecting #whatsnext in the world. Over the course of two days, there were inspiring keynotes, interactive Next-Gen Assemblies, energizing connections with fellow changemakers, and inspirational pitches from the the 10 TFF Challenge Finalist Teams. 

We brought C-suite executives together with disruptive innovators and entrepreneurs; Researchers and students together with leading experts; Creatives together with scientists and investors. Everyone was collaborating to address critical areas in transition.

We explored big topics with interdisciplinary approaches and real world impact. We discussed What's Next in the Economy, explored open sourced business models, debated the role of growing cities in feeding the future, participated in a podcast on vertical farming, or even tried our hand at biohacking!

A mash up of the best parts of SXSW, WEF and Burning Man, the TFF Global Summit is THE world’s meeting place for up-and-coming food system innovators and established players to share their latest insights and learn from each other in order to transform the future. 

Ready to be transported into the world of TFF? Check out our video archive! Show me more
meet the


Tim O'Reilly
Founder & CEO
O'Reilly Media
Ellen de Brabander
SVP R&D Nutrition PepsiCo
Interim CEO EIT Food
Holley Murchison
Oratory Glory
Christine Gould
Founder & CEO
Thought For Food Foundation
Guillaume Charny-Brunet
Director of Innovation
Michael Kock
Head of Intellectual Property
Alpha Sennon
Koert van Mensvoort
Next Nature Network
view all speakers
get to know the


day one
friday, may 26
08:30 09:30 Registration
09:30 11:00
Welcome & Program Overview
What's Next: Innovation
What's Next: Economy
What's Next: Nature
What's Next: Business
11:00 11:30
11:30 13:00 What’s Next: TFF
Understand the power of next generation innovation. Learn about our revamped TFF Global Challenge & Bootcamp.
One Year On
Hear updates from last year’s prize winners: with Mandela Nelson, Ihab Boulas, Mush’ab Nursantio and Eric Katz.
Introduction to Next-Gen Assemblies
Co-create solutions in our unique approach where every speaker is a participant, every participant is a speaker.
13:00 14:00
14:00 18:00
Next-Gen Assemblies
Exploring the frontiers of food & ag, and the world: Experimental Cities, Women in Agriculture, Opening Business Models, Meatless Meat, Creative Science, Biohacking & more.
18:10 18:30 Wrap Up & Food Meditation
18:30 19:00
19:00 21:30
Extraordinary Dinner
Mix and Mingle, Relax and Rejuvenate
day two
saturday, may 27
09:00 09:30 Daybreaker Morning Rave
Better than coffee!
09:30 10:30
What’s Next: Leadership
Power of the Next Generation
10:30 11:00
11:00 12:10
5 TFF Global Challenge Finalists
12:10 13:15
13:15 14:35
5 TFF Global Challenge Finalists
14:35 15:15
15:15 16:45
Pop-up Pitch Room
10 Additional Next-Gen Startup Pitches
15:15 16:45
Changemaker Masterclasses
Mastering the Art of Lifestyle Hacking, Understanding GIS Tools in Ag Startups, Building your Social Media Presence, 10x Your Growth, Networking the Global Way, Thinking Like a Futurist, Pitching Like a Pro
16:45 17:15
17:15 18:20
Announcing the Prize Winners
$30,000 up for grabs
18:20 19:00
Closing Keynote
Alpha Sennon
19:00 01:00
Dinner & Celebration
Afterparty with TFF Resident DJs Puerto & Maloney
Here’s what others are saying about us!
meet the


Meet the innovators, changemakers and big thinkers who will have the tough job of selecting our TFF Challenge prize winners on Day 2 of the TFF Summit. Each will hold a vote for which new venture will best help to feed 9+ billion people by 2050.

  • Eric Katz

    Eric is part of the TFF Challenge 2016 winning team Kulisha and is the next generation judge on our panel. He is a recent graduate of the University of Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business. Eric is interested in how businesses can incorporate strategies to address social issues into their models, positively impacting both their bottom line and the communities they serve.  Following this interest, he co-founded Kulisha, a for-profit social enterprise that is developing sustainable insect-based feed for fish. For this work, Eric was selected as a Forbes Under 30 Scholar. He developed the idea for the venture while working on the Quinault Indian Nation with his co-founder and learning more about the issues facing the animal feed, particularly aquafeed, after working on their salmon hatchery.

  • Ashley Lewis
    Invest with Impact

    Ashley is an Investment Officer with Accion Venture Lab, based in Ghana leading the team’s deal activity and portfolio engagement across West Africa. She has ten years of experience across financial services, investments and social ventures. Ashley has dedicated her time to investing in and scaling social ventures across Sub-Saharan Africa and South East Asia. Ashley also brings a wealth of knowledge from her time in the institutional asset management arms of Goldman Sachs and Vanguard and as an entrepreneur in the impact investing space as the Co-Founder of Invest With Impact.  Ashley has a bachelor’s degree from Morgan State University and a MBA from HEC Paris. She holds social innovation fellowships with the Finance Innovation Lab of London and StartingBloc.

  • Mark Durno
    Program Director - Agritech

    Mark grew up farming in NE Scotland with a mix of dairy, beef and arable (conventional production). He gained greenhouse and organic production experience in Sweden, England and Switzerland (mixed production). Mark was a member of the startup team at UrbanFarmers (Zurich & Basel, 2011). As Managing Director UrbanFarmers Benelux, he secured finance to expand the company internationally and build Europe’s largest commercial urban commercial farm (The Hague, 2015). He is currently Program Director Agritech at Rockstart and is responsible for driving a new vertical accelerator focussed on food and agriculture (Amsterdam, 2017). Mark is a qualified Scottish lawyer and holds an Executive MBA from Rotterdam School of Management.

“You’ll hear it here first.” If you’re interested in understanding the latest breakthroughs in areas such as synthetic biology, cellular agriculture, vertical farming, logistics or agtech; or if you want to know more about new foods and appropriate solutions for smallholders; or if you want to get a view into the developing business and innovation models shaping the future of food and ag, the TFF Summit is the place for you.
Get to know the

tff challenge finalists

This year there are more prizes than ever up for grabs!

The Top 10 TFF Challenge Finalists represent cutting-edge innovations in food & ag from university students around the world. Selected from nearly 500 applications from 1000+ universities in 129 countries, these teams competed for a prize pool totaling more than $30,000 USD.


Using discarded fruits and vegetables to create a dried, nutrient-rich food which can be used in disaster relief situations and as a solid fuel source. Universiti Putra Malaysia


A thermo-dehydrator for vegetables and fruits powered by bio-waste to prolong the shelf-life of produce from two days to two years. Makerere U; Uganda Technical College- Elgon; Kyambogo U

Ligno Flava

Sustainable, low-cost, natural vanilla production from food waste that can replace chemical flavorings. University of Brawijaya

Growing Future

An information and agro-commerce platform that facilitates direct sales between small farmers and consumers, leveraging open data to analyze market trends. Jorge Tadeo Lozano; Universidad de Los Andes; Universidad Sergio Arboleda

From Challenge to Opportunity

Creating an affordable fertilizer from seaweed for farmers, and using the leftover pulp to make nutritious cookies for malnourished children. Gujarat Technological U; The Institution Of Engineers (INDIA); EPFL (Switzerland)

Dairy FIT

Combining the power of machine learning and data analytics technologies to predict cattle behaviour and genomic tendencies, with an aim to improve the health, wellbeing and productivity of intensively-farmed animals. Colorado State University

Climate Edge

A low-cost weather station and online monitoring system that provides targeted recommendations for smallholder farmers in tropical climates. Imperial College London

BlueGreen Nexus

A floating greenhouse that uses passive solar energy to distill ocean water into freshwater, creating a land, water and energy-neutral form of scaleable urban agriculture. Sterling College; Savannah College of Art & Design; Green Mountain College


A bioparticle that degrades pesticides into safe by-products in a matter of hours, allowing farmers to better control when they harvest crops. University of Virginia


An investment platform enabling collaborative projects between Agribusiness (Agri), Young Investors (Yo) and Landowners (Lo). HEC Paris

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tff global summit

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the netherlands

The Netherlands is consistently ranked as one of the most innovative countries in the world, and is a hub for cutting-edge research, top universities and interesting new startups. Amsterdam's cultural and social life is so varied and extensive - there are world-class museums, restaurants, theatres and concert halls, as well as so many unique cultural experiences. The canals and historic neighbourhoods make for a beautiful, impressive environment to live and work in.

Our venue is the industrial landmark De Kromhouthal, located on the water in one of the city's most creative hotspots.

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