Food growers, investors and technologists convene to create new tech industry  

The Eastern Shore Entrepreneurship Center (ESEC), TEDCO and MidAtlantic Farm Credit will convene investors, entrepreneurs, watermen, farmers, academics and service providers at the third regional F³ Tech Symposium “Agriculture & Aquaculture: The Newest Emerging Technology Sector” on Wednesday, November 28, from 9am to 3pm, at the Universities at Shady Grove in Rockville. The free day-long forum is designed to advance awareness, foster partnerships, and create a shared understanding of market and industry needs in the booming F³ Tech sector.

“Advancements in agricultural and aquaculture technology are changing how we grow our food and manage its production, distribution, and consumption,” said Mike Thielke, ESEC Executive Director. “Agriculture and aquaculture technologies that increase yields, slash harvest times, reduce waste, and ultimately reduce costs and environmental impact are seeing quantum leaps thanks to the development of new and expanding businesses in this sector.”

“Agritech and Aquatech are two of the fastest growing markets and present tremendous business opportunities for entrepreneurs and investors,” said Andrew Rose, Director of Innovation, Strategy and development at MidAtlantic Farm Credit.  “Just as the world’s expanding population is hungry for new, sustainable foods sources, so too are investors eager for deal flow with start-ups ready for commercialization.”

“We believe that F³ – farm, fish and food – technologies represent tremendous growth potential for Maryland’s economy,” said Anne Balduzzi of TEDCO. “Like the BioTech and CyberTech industries’ emergence and dominance in the 1990’s and 2000’s respectively, we are confident Maryland is poised to be a leader in AgriTech and AquaTech tomorrow – if we make the right investments today.”

Thanks to the financial support of TEDCO and MidAtlantic Farm Credit, the Rural Maryland Council and the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center, the F³ Tech Symposium is free, however advance registration is required. The event will be held in the Ballroom in Building II at The Universities at Shady Grove, 9630 Gudelsky Drive, Rockville. Parking is available at the Traville Gateway Garage located on the campus.

Following coffee and networking, the symposium opens with an update on F³ Tech initiatives in Maryland by Thielke, the MidAtlantic Farm Credit and the College of Southern Maryland, site of the previous symposium. They will be followed by presentations about the latest advancements in the AgriTech and AquaTech by leading national speakers from across the United States.

Planned speakers include Arron Ault, Senior Research Engineer for the Open Ag Technology Group at Purdue University in Lafayette, IN; Roger Royse, Founder at Royse Law Firm in Palo Alto, CA; and Joseph Hankins, Vice President and State Director of the Conservation Fund and Senior Advisor to the Freshwater Institute in Shepherdstown, WV.

The event will once again feature lunch time table top discussions facilitated by subject matter experts in their respective fields. Attendees will select two of three topics to participate: Data and analytics (e.g., precision ag, predictive analytics, data mining); technology (robotics, drones and NextGen farming); and, marketplace (compliance and third party certifications).

Click here to learn more and to register.