FFAR Announces Harvest for Health Prize Criteria


  • Health-Agriculture Nexus

Nearly two-thirds of the world’s food supply is comprised of three crops – maize, rice and wheat. Yet, there are over 50,000 known edible plant species. To accelerate development of underutilized crops the Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR) and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), with funding from RF Catalytic Capital (RFCC), launched the Harvest for Health Challenge and are providing research and application criteria for the upcoming $1 million challenge.

The Harvest for Health Breakthrough Crop Challenge includes two distinct parts. In spring 2023, FFAR awarded $216,460 in funding during the initial seed funding part to develop predictive models that can determine a crop’s potential as a source of selected functional properties.

To further accelerate underutilized crops, the Harvest for Health Breakthrough Crop Challenge is entering the predictive model development and validation part, which offers up to $1 million for a predictive model that effectively identifies underutilized crops that have potential functional properties of interest to the food industry. Participating in the seed funding part is not a requirement for applying to the predictive model development and validation part. The winning model will be used to prioritize crops for commercial development.

FFAR is hosting an informational webinar on October 3, 2023, at noon EDT to provide additional details about the application criteria. Attendees must register to attend the webinar.

Constance Gewa
Our global food supply can greatly benefit from increased crop diversification, adding a variety of nutritious food options for consumers. Developing underutilized crops can be expensive and time intensive. This is why FFAR and GAIN launched the Harvest for Health Challenge — to help alleviate some of these challenges and accelerate crop development in the marketplace. Constance Gewa, Ph.D.
Senior Program Director
Bolstering Healthy Food Systems


Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research

The Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR) builds public-private partnerships to fund bold research addressing big food and agriculture challenges. FFAR was established in the 2014 Farm Bill to increase public agriculture research investments, fill knowledge gaps and complement the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s research agenda. FFAR’s model matches federal funding from Congress with private funding, delivering a powerful return on taxpayer investment. Through collaboration and partnerships, FFAR advances actionable science benefiting farmers, consumers and the environment.