What is the Eligibility Criteria?

View the Eligibility Criteria

Is the EIT Food Accelerator Network free of charge?

The EIT Food Accelerator Network does not cost anything for startups.

We are obsessed with helping entrepreneurs across the agriculture and food industries.

Everything we do brings value to startups and prioritises their needs.


How is the EIT Food Accelerator Network funded?

The EIT Food Accelerator Network is funded by EIT Food and by our partners from industry and academia.


What does the EIT Food Accelerator Network look for in a startup?

The EIT Food Accelerator Network judges look for high-impact agri-food startups, with a viable path to success and some traction/progress in their plans.


What is the time commitment for startups in the accelerator program?

We know from experience that it's easier to take advantage of all the EIT Food Accelerator Network has to offer when you or someone from your team is working onsite. Due to Covid-19, we will host the programme mostly online and do not expect you to travel. You're able to choose elements of the program that work best for you: the (online) events to attend, the mentors to meet with, the partners to network with, and the info sessions to participate in. Although you are free to choose according to your priorities, we expect active, consistent engagement in the accelerator program. This requires regular attendance from at least one team member in the EIT Food Accelerator Network programme (i.e. up to 30 days for the duration of the accelerator program from mid-June until end of October).


What is your policy on intellectual property protection?

Protection of intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, trademarks, copyright, trade secrets, etc.) of your concept is your responsibility and your responsibility alone. If you have an idea or product that you might want to patent, we strongly recommend speaking to a lawyer before submitting information about this idea to the EIT Food Accelerator Network.

Information you include in your application will be shared with the set of expert judges that review your application. Please note that these judges do NOT sign Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs). Therefore, you should not include any information in your application that you feel could be harmful to your company should that information be disclosed.

Note that applying to the EIT Food Accelerator Network is very similar to presenting your idea to potential investors. Very few investors (Venture Capitalists or "angel investors") will agree to sign an NDA before even hearing your initial pitch. It is up to you to determine the right balance between sharing enough information to get people interested and to give you credibility, and sharing information that could potentially be damaging to your company if it were to be disclosed.


Who are the evaluators?

All judging panels consist of a mixture of experienced entrepreneurs and experts from the agriculture and food industries.


Are there particular areas within the agri-food space that we are specifically interested in?

No, any company that can have an impact at any point along the entire food supply chain is eligible to apply and take part. We especially encourage startups to apply that have the ambition to transform our food ecosystem by making it more trusted, better for people’s health and more sustainable.



To be considered eligible for the EIT FAN programme, applicants must be agri-food startups:

1. That are set to make a big impact on any part of the agriculture or food supply chain thus committed to building a healthier, more trusted and sustainable food system

2. At (pre)seed stage successfully completed customer validation and potentially can already demonstrate traction indicator (e.g. LoIs, sales, letters of support)

3. Registered company successfully completed technology readiness level 4 (“technology validated in lab”) and customer readiness level 4 (“confirmed problem/needs from several customers and/or end users”)

4. Active in the EU and its member states or EU associated countries (i.e. Iceland, Norway, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, Israel, Moldova, Switzerland, Faroe Islands, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Tunisia, Georgia Armenia),

5. Committed to the programme (we expect active, consistent engagement in the programme  - this requires regular presence from at least one team for up to 30 days for the duration of the accelerator programme)