Our Managing Director and Co-founder, Charlie Guy, has just returned from Amsterdam after competing in the Green Challenge, a sustainable entrepreneurship competition. We were awarded 100,000 euros to accelerate the development of our aeroponic equipment and farm management system, Ostara®️.

The recognition of the Green Challenge shows that we are developing a viable solution to the many problems that our global agricultural systems will face in the future, from water shortages to the effects of extreme weather. We allow farmers to protect their crops, diversify what they are growing and massively reduce their ecological footprint.

With this sum of money, we can further develop our business. The support we've had from the Green Challenge will allow us to bring about a real step change in agricultural productivity and reduce the resource cost of fresh produce for farmers all over the world.

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Charlie said: “It was a brilliant experience to stand up on stage in front of so many people who share the same passion for sustainable enterprises.

“Although the stakes were high, there was a fantastic atmosphere because everybody taking part was already a winner, and anything else we could of won would have just been a huge bonus.”

We were proud to be representing the creative spirit of Bristol. There is a fantastic community in the city which has been so supportive from the very start, so it’s great to get some recognition for the really exciting work happening here. It’s not just technology firms, there are so many projects and organisations who have gotten involved and are working together to come up with sustainable solutions for the future.

The winning startups

In addition to LettUs Grow, the Dutch startup AquaBattery and American startup AlgiKnitwill take the same amount home. The first prize of half a million euro goes to the air bubble curtain that combats plastic pollution in our seas by startup The Great Bubble Barrier from The Netherlands. The runner-up prize of EUR 200,000 is for the textile recycling marketplace by startup Reverse Resources from Estonia. This brings the total prize pool of one of the biggest sustainability competitions in the world to EUR 1 million. In addition to the prize money, all five finalists will receive six months of expert coaching to improve the likelihood of their businesses succeeding.

Record number of entries

This year, a record number of 845 entrepreneurs from 100 countries submitted their sustainable business plans aimed at combating climate change. Last year, the Rwandan startup EarthEnable won the EUR 500,000 first prize with their sustainable alternative to cement.