Centering entrepreneurship is vital to accelerating nutrition as an economic development and nutrition security priority. The Institute identifies and champions entrepreneurs and start-ups that are innovating for a nutrition centered economy.

Current Challenges

Innovate Forward: The Longevity Challenge

Learn more about the need for innovation and the call to action from the Nestlé Health Science newsroom.

Innovate Forward: The Longevity Challenge is a joint initiative created to accelerate innovation in longevity and support healthy aging. The initiative focuses on cognitive, gut, and metabolic health, which evolve with aging and have a significant impact on overall quality of life.

The Longevity Challenge is intended to help develop new, impactful solutions to benefit health and wellness for an aging population. To that end, Nestlé Health Science and the Food & Nutrition Innovation Institute are engaging and supporting the startup and entrepreneur community to help drive new solutions for improved longevity. The initiative calls on startups to join a competition, focusing on advancing science and helping participants drive their businesses forward. Winning ideas will receive strategic resources and insightful expertise to help address business challenges and accelerate their innovation.

Learn More – See Official Rules

How Does the Competition Work?

The Tufts $100K is a new ventures competition brought to you by the Derby Center for Entrepreneurship at Tufts. As part of this competition, the Friedman School awards a $10K cash prize and a one year membership to the Food & Nutrition Innovation Council to the venture that best advances nutrition science and/or food system innovation.

To enter the Competition and compete for the Friedman Prize, please visit the $100k New Ventures Competition website.

The 2024 Competition

In 2024, teams are invited to compete for The Friedman Food & Nutrition Innovation $10k Prize through the Derby Entrepreneurship Center’s $100k New Ventures Competition.

The Friedman Food & Nutrition Innovation $10k Prize, sponsored by the Tufts Food & Nutrition Innovation Institute, is a $10k prize awarded at the Tufts Derby Center for Entrepreneurship $100k New Ventures Competition. For 2024, qualifying teams entering the Tufts $100k will be invited to also compete for the Friedman Food & Nutrition Innovation $10k Prize. This prize will be considered for any competing venture that focuses specifically on food system innovation and/or nutrition and creatively tackles the numerous opportunities and challenges related to food, wellness and sustainability. We encourage diverse and creative submissions and interdisciplinary teams.

Winners also receive up to $10,000 of in-kind legal support from Foley & Lardner, LLP.

Meet Our Entrepreneur Advisors

Our Advisors are successful business and social entrepreneurs who provide, based on their own time and interest, guidance to the School, our amazing students and faculty, and fledgling companies.

Dasha Agoulnik

N19CEO, CorePerform

Wendy Behr

N15Chief R&D Officer, Sovos Brands; Member, Tufts Nutrition Council

Silvia Berciano Benitez

Tufts University

Richard Black

Principal, Quadrant D Consulting; Adjunct Professor, Friedman School; Member, Tufts Nutrition Council

Michael Blau

N12PRetired Partner, Foley and Lardner LLP; Member, Friedman School Board of Advisors

Kevin Boylan

Co-Founder, Veggie Grill; Managing Partner, PowerPlant Ventures

Karen Bressler

DirectorBoston Scott/ Qurological

Matthew Claudel

Founder, Field States, Co-Founder MIT Design X

Christopher Damman

Chief Medical Officer, UR Labs

Jessica Deckinger

Chief Marketing Officer, Everbridge

Jack Derby

Professor, Tufts Entrepreneurship Center; CEO, Derby Management

Stephanie Dorsey

Founding Partner, E2JDJ VC

Leslie Durso

Vegan Chef & Wellness Expert, Leslie Durso Inc.

Jimena Florez

Founder and CEO, Chaak Health Snacks

Betsy Fore

Co-founder, Tiny Organics

Kim Fortunato

CEO, Kim Fortunato Consulting; former President, Campbell Soup Foundation

Arvind Gupta

Managing Director, IndieBio; General Partner, SOSV

Jennifer Hashley

AG05—Director of New Entry Sustainable Farming Project, Friedman School

Andrew Ive

Founder, Big Idea Ventures; Member, Tufts Nutrition Council

Kellee James

Founder & CEO, Mercaris

Corey Jones

Founding Partner, E2JDJ VC

Johan Jorgensen

Founder, Sweden FoodTech

Michael Karsch

A90, F91The Juice Press, LLC; Member, Friedman School Board of Advisors; Trustee, Tufts University

Zain Kassam

Co-Founder & Chief Medical Officer, Finch Therapeutics

Patricia Kearney

N78, AG81President & CEO, PMK Associates, Inc.; Member, Tufts Nutrition Council

Alexander King

Director, Strategy, Insights & Analytics, Eastman; Mentor, MIT Venture Mentor Service

Ashley Koff

CEO, The Better Nutrition Program

Monique Marez

Founder, Eptimizo

Ron Molina-Brantley

VP, Relationship Manager, Berkshire Bank

Ayr Muir

Founder & CEO, Clover Food Lab

Tawanda Muzhingi

Innovation, Plant Based Foods Association

Mehrdad Noorani

Founding Partner, Global Infrastructure Partners

Sean O’Sullivan

Founder and Managing Partner, SOSV; Member, Tufts Nutrition Council

Kevin Jyo Oye

E79 —Executive Director, Gordon Institute; Director, M.S. in Innovation & Management Program Professor of the Practice, Tufts University

Rebecca Parekh

Founder & CEO, THE WELL

Eve Turow Paul

Author, Journalist, and Executive Director for the Food for Climate League

Victor Penev

CEO, Edamam, food tech/health tech mentor

David Radlo

Partner, Achievemost

Micah Risk

N13Head of Nutrition, Lighter Inc.

Ron Shigeta

CSO, Wild Earth Pets

Rajiv Srinath

Co-Founder and Managing Partner, MNI Partners LLC

Emily Steliotes

A15, N17Agriculture and Food Systems Researcher, HowGood; Co-Founder and Coach, Golden Acorn

Bob Stringer

Founder & CEO, Crimson Seed Capital LLC

Maha Tahiri

Founder & CEO, Nutrition Sustainability Strategies LLC; Adjunct Professor, Tufts University 

Heather Terry

Executive Mentor, Serial Entrepreneur, and Partner at BeyondBrands

Latham Thomas

Founder, Nutrition and Lifestyle Expert, Mama GlowMember, Tufts Nutrition Council

Matthew M. Whitney

CEO, Siegel Egg

Amy Wu

Founder & Chief Content Director, From Farms to Incubators