The second round of NOBALIS Entrepreneurial and Innovation capacity development (EICD) program for food, biotechnology and bioresource start-ups took place in the fall of 2023.

The program combined a virtual Idea Hackathon, three development workshops and Demo Day.

Idea Hackathon on October 4th combined exciting guest speakers and students’ presentations of their ideas.  Student teams had ideas related to a variety of bioresources and looked into the development of animal feed, biocosmetics, algae, coconuts, rice, lignin, and fibers.

The guest speakers included Caroline Sandberg from team UNWASTED working on growing mushrooms on coffee grounds and the winner of the fall 2022 round of NOBALIS EICD program shared her experience.  Mari-Ann Meigo Fonseca, the Co-founder & COO of start-up GELATEX shared their start-up journey related to development of nanofibers. Filip Reineby from Drivhuset Norden and an experienced business developer provided practical advice and experience for start-ups on how to pitch their ideas, work on determining their customers and market. 8 teams were selected to proceed in the program.

The three development workshops took place on October 18th, November 8th, and November 29th and student teams worked with mentors on their business models, marketing, product development, MVP testing, and funding pitches.

The fall 2024 program wrapped up with the competition at the Demo Day on December 13th. The best teams were:

  • 1st: team Vassa Hebin representing Estonian University of Life Sciences working on upcycling the biowaste into skin care products
  • 2nd: team BiIoAsphalt from Estonian University of Life Sciences exploring biorefining biomass into lignin and its application as bio-asphalt
  • 3rd: team Algium from Swedish University of Agricultural Science working on consumer and industrial products based on microalgae to increase carbon capture.