Skip to content

“Hacking the Food System” – a Food+Tech Connect series & Farm Bill Hackathon, NYC – Dec ’11

November 6, 2011

Food+Tech Connect is a relatively new blog and event-hosting group that is focused on technology and its role in the food system.  There are two especially interesting developments:

  • Hacking the Food System – An ongoing blog series where they’re asking leading food and technology innovators: “how can information and technology be used to hack the food system?”
  • Farm Bill Hackathon – December 3rd in NYC, where they are bringing together journalists, technologists, designers, policy makers, and food data specialists to develop tools and visualizations that help the public better understand how the Farm Bill impacts our lives.

The Hacking the Food System series is a mixed bag – some more impactful and feasible than others.  This makes perfect sense, though, since submissions are from folks from either the tech industry or the food industry.  Very few posts are from people with both a tech & food background.

Coming from 10 years in enterprise software (not sure how much this translates but nonetheless) and 9 years in food supply chain, I attempted to outline some high-impact, feasible opportunities.  My post in the series outlines a range of technology needs, including:

  • Precision agriculture
  • Water metering, sensing & allocation tools
  • Anything helping farms “do more with less”
  • Traceability tools & sensors
  • The elusive b-to-b inventory management & supply/demand alignment tools
  • Aquaponics in certain situations
  • Food stamp processing & innovation
  • Business development and operations tools for the notoriously un-business-savvy farms and the thousands of NGOs working to help them
  • Tools to help people cook
  • My pipe dream: An online Cliff Notes version of the Farm Bill legislation, including searchable index, map of where the money flows now, and links to pertinent legislators and contact people associated with each bill

I believe there is a lot of opportunity for funders and entrepreneurs of all types.   And, I am hoping the December Farm Bill Hackathon will yield something like my pipe dream tool above.  Fingers crossed for some cool new prototypes.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *