Mtech establishes the Bioeconomy Innovation Award

Bioeconomy innovations promote sustainable development, facilitate everyday life, and improve well-being. Innovation is a new idea that has been or can be taken into practice and is beneficial. The purpose of the Bioeconomy Innovation Award is to motivate businesses, associations, groups and individuals to bring new innovations to the public eye. The goal of the Award is to encourage them to innovative activity, promote new business operations, draw attention to innovation and the significance of innovation in future society, and to emphasis the significance of the well-being of nature and humans. Even a small innovation can create new business opportunities, increase well-being, and conserve nature.

The Bioeconomy Innovation Award has a limited application period and a theme that will be announced in advance. An application for the Award can be submitted by an individual or a group of people. Proposals are especially expected from Nordic and EU-countries, but everyone can participate.

Rules of the Bioeconomy Innovation Award

The Award will be handed out in one award series. In selecting the recipient of the Award, attention will be paid to the following circumstances: the functionality of the solution, business potential, feasibility, clarity, and novelty value.

The selection process is the responsibility of a jury appointed by Mtech. The jury selects from among the candidates those that best match the assessment criteria and submits a proposal for the recipient(s) to the Board of Directors of Mtech Digital Solutions Oy.

Mtech has the right to refrain from handing out the Innovation Award. In such a case, the jury will explain to the applicant why the award was not handed out.

Applications for award recipients can be made by submitting to Mtech a free-form competition proposal, through the address provided, within the application period. Applicants can enclose appendices supporting the proposal, if they so wish.

Bioeconomy Innovation Award 2018 – No foreign objects in cattle feed

Mtech wants to promote methods for making cattle feed purer and more suitable for cattle. For this reason, the 2018 Bioeconomy Innovation Award looks for innovations for reducing the number of foreign objects that end up in cattle feed. The value of the Innovation Award in 2018 is €3,000.

In the summer of 2017, Mtech sent a survey to its cattle farm customers, asking about problems caused by aluminium cans and other rubbish at cattle farms. The survey’s goal was to find out whether the farms had had any problems with foreign objects eaten by cattle over the past five years. In all, 394 cattle farmers responded to the survey in the course of three weeks.

On the basis of the results, many cows at Finnish cattle farms die or become ill due to drinking cans thrown out in nature. Cans that have been tossed on the roadside end up in the field and become shredded in feed, causing serious internal injuries to cattle. A great many farms also suffer from problems caused by other forms of rubbish. Farms have a lot of trouble with glass fragments and plastic waste, in particular. Such problems are emphasised on fields by the roadside where people throw rubbish from cars driving by. 

According to a ProAgria expert on grassland production, problems caused by cans and rubbish have come up in discussions before, but the scope of the phenomenon has been unclear. Cans and other foreign objects torn up by shredders wreak havoc when they end up in the digestive tract of cattle. Some objects may become encapsulated in the gut, in which case the animal survives. However, objects that are ragged and have sharp edges usually cause serious internal injuries.

The application period for the award is 10 November 2017 – 1 March 2018.

Please submit your proposals for the Innovation Award, in a digital format, via a form available at http://blogi.www.mtech.fi/biotalouden-innovaatiopalkinto.

The recipient(s) of the Award will be announced on the same day when cows at the Viikki Research Farm rush to summer pasture in spring 2018, but on 15 May 2018 at the latest.