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The Manure Challenge : An Expedited Pathway to Circular Farm Systems

The Why

We envision a world in which farmers, in addition to feeding us, provide clean water, organic fertilizers and fuel, and do so in a way that increases their profitability. To get there, we need innovation.


As such, we’re launching The Manure Challenge: An expedited pathway to circular farm systems. Through the Challenge, we seek to scale solutions for farmers – small to large – to deliver essential ecosystem services to communities around the United States. The Challenge will guide start-ups with solutions that capture the value from manure-based nutrients, fiber, and energy on an expedited path to market.

The Details

This non-dilutive startup accelerator program identifies innovative manure-based product solutions and supports the most promising ones with business and market development coaching. The Challenge will focus on increasing collaboration among established industry companies and experts and the selected startup companies. The Challenge will provide mentoring and resources to help the selected startup companies advance in the areas of technical, business, financial and environmental impact.


6-10 companies will be selected to be part of a cohort, and those companies will pitch their solutions to investors and industry stakeholders during an event in early 2020. A judging panel will select winners and will award a prize  to the winner(s).


The Challenge starts in March 2019 and runs through Q1 2020. 


The Manure Challenge is advised by a range of organizations, including Dairy Farmers of America, Newtrient and World Wildlife Fund.

If you are interested in learning more about the project, please contact Connie Bowen, connie@theyieldlab.com.


April + May



If you've got a company working to commercialize technology that enables sustainable manure management, we want to hear from you. 

Check out our FAQs for more info on what we're looking for.

JuLY 2019 -

FebRUary 2020

In person + 

WORK WITH Our partners

We've amassed a group of agribusiness experts, farmers, NGO leaders, and government leaders to mentor companies throughout the program. Each company will be assigned to 2-3 mentors.




Companies will compete at a pitch competition in February 2020.

Judges will be provided with preliminary materials so that commercial and technical factors can be considered in addition to the actual pitch.