New initiative launched to help startups in agriculture and food

Program will offer companies a chance to work with world-class scientists, economists, experienced entrepreneurs and business students

Calgary-based Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) – Rockies is launching CDL Ag, a new stream designed to help grow seed-stage science and technology-based startups in the agriculture and food space.

CDL-Rockies is based at the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business and is part of a wider network of eight CDL sites spread across four countries. Each site is tied to a leading business school and each bases its streams on the strength of the local business, science and technology ecosystems, according to a news release.

“Calgary’s location at the centre of Canada’s agricultural heartland makes it an important nexus for Ag,” said Jim Dewald, Dean of the Haskayne School of Business. “Through CDL-Rockies, we look forward to tapping into the leading research being developed on the Prairies.”

Officials said the program will offer companies a chance to work with world-class scientists, economists, experienced entrepreneurs and business students, through an objective-based process, with the goal of commercializing and scaling their enterprises.

“When it comes to agriculture, the Canadian Prairies are home to world-class academic and business expertise as well as some of the largest agriculture companies in the world,” said Alice Reimer, Site Lead at CDL-Rockies. “I can’t think of a better place for startups in this industry to get the support they need to grow.”

Nutrien, the world’s largest producer of crop inputs and a global leader in Ag Retail, has joined CDL-Rockies in its Ag Stream as a CDL Catalyst Partner.

“Nutrien is an organization highly focused on ensuring food security for the world, while playing a leading role in sustainable agriculture. Our goal is to produce more food with fewer natural resources and lower carbon emissions,” said Chuck Magro, Nutrien President and CEO. “Our partnership with CDL-Rockies will help place us at the cutting edge of new technologies that will bring us closer to our goal.”

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