BC tech companies win farm innovation challenge

Maria Church
March 22, 2017
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March 22, 2017 - Two B.C. companies that have developed unique biomass solutions for the agriculture industry are among the four winners of the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture and the BC Innovation Council’s Innovation Challenge.


Vancouver’s Boost Environmental Systems developed an anaerobic digestion pre-treatment technology that results in increased production of biogas, and the recovery of a high-quality fertilizer product that the farm can use on the land or sell. The technology is easy to set up and easy to integrate.

Gordon Shank Consulting of Burnaby designed an industrial-strength, fully-compostable yarn made from cellulose that can be used for plants in greenhouses. The company’s BioMid yarn is made from B.C. forest product residue and replaces the synthetic, polypropylene yarns currently used.

Each winning company received $20,000.

Sergey Lobanov, president of Boost Environmental Systems, said in a news release the Agritech Innovation Challenge was an avenue to reach farmers and help them address problems. "It was also very important for us as a start-up company to validate our technology for this market and demonstrate all the benefits our solution can offer."

The winners were selected by a panel of experts that included representatives of the BC Innovation Council, the BC Agriculture Council, Genome BC, the National Research Council, the Investment Agriculture Foundation, SRC Tec, Bioenterprise BC and the federal and provincial governments.

“We’re pleased to support the transfer of technology into B.C.’s $13-billion agriculture industry, fuelling its growth and competitiveness. Through initiatives like the Agritech Innovation Challenge, we can help grow the agrifood sector with technology, and create jobs in regional communities across B.C,” Carl Anderson, president and CEO BC Innovation Council, said in the release.

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