Food Heroes wanted! How do you save vegs&fruit in the first parts of supply chain?


Europeans throw away an average of 150 kilos of food products per year. A lot can be gained at the basis of the food chain. Plenty of food out of specification or by-products are all too often ignored. Many farmers and growers are racking their brains over this. Together with designers, technologists and food professionals they save food from destruction. We call them our Food Heroes. Now the Food Heroes Awards encourage these Food Heroes to show their solutions to the world.


Food Heroes Award: conditions


The Food Heroes Award places people and their food rescue actions in the first part of the supply chain in the spotlights. The Food Heroes Award is a great showcase for novel food waste solutions and their creators. The Food Heroes Award specifically sinks its teeth into waste from:

  • Fruits & Vegetables
  • Fish & Seafood
  • Male Animals: male goats & one day male chicks

The Food Heroes Award therefore seeks to:

  • Encourage the development, implementation and spreading of concrete and innovative solutions to rescue food waste from the dumpster
  • Engage relevant stakeholders, like designers, technologists and scientists, in a co-creative design approach to maximize impact and effect of one solution (to other regions and sectors).

Submissions are accepted in the format of the application form which includes:

  • a quick pitch why your solution should win the award
  • a visual description (like photos, videos, diagrams, infographics, etc.) of your solution
  • short checklist of criteria pointing out the level of readiness (innovation), impact, effect, feasibility and multi-actor involvement.

Any Food Hero whose solution has been developed within North West Europe is welcome to submit an entry, including farmers, designers, food entrepreneurs, waste scientists, social entrepreneurs, food factories, students, NGOs and individuals.
Submissions have to be the own work of the individual or (partner) organizations doing the submission.
Submissions are allowed in English, French, Dutch and German language:

The application form in English
Le formulaire d’inscription en Français
Het inschrijvingsformulier in het Nederlands.
Das Anmelde Formular auf Deutsch.

Criteria & jury

Submissions are judged by a jury based on six major criteria:

  • Innovativeness: Food Heroes is about the development of new and innovative ideas to reduce food waste in the first parts of the food chain. We want you to describe what is innovative about your solution.
  • Innovation readiness: Food Heroes focusses on implementation. We want to bring new solutions to the market. That’s why we want to know what your innovation is worth, explained in the level of innovation readiness. We are especially interested in solutions of which the concept at least has been proven to work.
  • Multi-actor involvement: One Food Hero can’t tackle the societal problem of food waste on his own. The Food Heroes Award wants to show the (silent) helpers behind the hero as well. Development in a co-creative design approach creates powerful solutions. And we also want to know the role of small-medium sized entrepreneurs in agrifood?
  • Feasibility: New solutions really make a difference when they’re adopted by more entrepreneurs facing the same difficulties. Business benefits, revenues and turnovers are important indicators for the speed of multiplication. That’s why we like to understand your  business model explaining costs and benefits, effected by the food waste solution.
  • Impact: How many tons  of food does one Food Hero save from being destroyed? This is an important criteria for the impact of a Food Hero. That’s why we want to know an estimated total number of food waste reduction (in kilograms/tonnages/numbers of animals).
  • Scalability: Food Heroes fly their solution across borders and into a wider world. Project Food Heroes would love to know what’s the range of impact and acceleration of the solution.


The Food Heroes Award programme walks this timeline. We’ll raise the final flag at CFIA Expo, 14 March 2019, Rennes (France).
These are the main checkpoints of this timeline:

  • 15 November 2018: final deadline submission food waste solutions
  • 1 December 2018: first selection of submissions to the jury
  • 15 January 2019: jury meeting to select top-3 (per food sector)
  • 1 February 2019: start public voting campaign
  • 14 March 2019: Food Heroes Award Show at CFIA Expo 2019, Rennes (France)


Jury selection winners and public award winners all receive the following prizes:

  • Food Heroes sculpture to put at a pedestal at home
  • Business film about the food waste solution
  • Priceless fame

Follow the Food Heroes project via its website, Instagram and Twitter. For more information on the project, consult our website and our other articles.