The Agritech Ramp-Up Pilot Program (Ramp-Up), which began in late 2021, wrapped up at the end of September after a successful year. The program was designed to enable entrepreneurs to move their ideas to commercial realities by providing training, coaching, mentoring, networking, and funding.
Organized into two cohorts, cohort one began in January 2022 followed by cohort two in April 2022. Each cohort was provided with three full days of market validation training that included creating a go-to-market plan as the final assignment. Following the completion of the training, select companies were provided specialized mentoring, coaching, and networking opportunities based on individual company needs.
Finally, at the end of each cohort, the top-performing companies were invited to a virtual pitch event, demonstrating their learnings – with the best ranked companies winning a $25,000 grant. A panel of judges from the BC Agritech community scored the presentations and the top two companies were awarded the Business Development Grant.
After completing Ramp-Up, participants like INHUB Farms pivoted their strategy based on their learnings from the program. Patrick Lemieux, founder of INHUB, explained that the company has “changed our [business] model and we changed our name from Akitig Mushrooms to INHUB FARMS. We believe that our new INHUB FARMS name really reflects our mission, to set up a smart mushroom farm in the hub of every city, creating a new healthy local food supply. We have completely rebranded. The [program] helped us figure all this out.”