KCA University Innovation Week - FoodNovation Challenge

Theme: Leveraging on Academia – Industry linkages to foster sustainable innovations
30th October - 3rd November

Are you a young, passionate aspiring chef with a talent for crafting delectable dishes? Are you an innovative entrepreneur with groundbreaking ideas in the food value chain, poised to transform your start-up into a sustainable enterprise?

About the Business Plan Competition

Are you a young, passionate aspiring chef with a talent for crafting delectable dishes? Are you an innovative entrepreneur with groundbreaking ideas in the food value chain, poised to transform your start-up into a sustainable enterprise? KCA Professional and Technical Training Institute in partnership with the Co-Production for Youth Entrepreneurship in Kenya (COPYEK) Project is thrilled to invite you to showcase your culinary prowess and win exciting prizes in KCA University’s Food Innovation Challenge! This challenge is fueled by a commitment to inspire youth entrepreneurship and innovation within Kenya’s dynamic catering landscape.


The FoodNovation Challenge encourages participants to explore the thriving food industry landscape and unleash their creativity to address global food-related challenges. Foodnovators are invited to align their creations with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goals 2 (Zero Hunger), 3 (Good Health and Well-being), and 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production).

Innovation Focus Areas

To achieve our objectives, applicants are urged to focus their innovations on the following areas:

  • Art of Culinary Creations: Craft visually stunning dishes, culinary masterpieces, or tantalizing pastries that celebrate cultural identity and the fusion of different culinary traditions.
  • Healthy Living Recipes: Create nutritious recipes that cater to health-conscious consumers without sacrificing the sumptuous appeal of food, all while considering affordability.
  • Foodpreneurship: Innovate food business models by exploring unconventional channels for delivering food or catering services beyond traditional kiosks and restaurants.
  • Packaging and Retailing: Develop innovative methods for processing and packaging food to reduce post-harvest losses and enhance returns in the food value chain.

Competition Highlights

  1. Submit your concept note.
  2. Attend a virtual Orientation Q & A Session to familiarize yourself with the competition.
  3. Prepare and present your dish during the KCA University Innovation Week.

Judging Criteria

Concepts will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. Impact Potential
  2. Revenue Generation
  3. Alignment with SDGs
  4. Innovation and Uniqueness
  5. Feasibility
  6. Market Potential and Viability
  7. Team and Execution
  8. Presentation Quality

Eligibility Criteria

  1. Age: Applicants must be between the ages of 18 to 34 to participate.
  2. Location: The competition is open to individuals residing in Kenya.
  3. Business Stage: All businesses must have ideas or business models in the start-up phase, with operating businesses being at most two years old.
  4. For-Profit Businesses: Non-profit organizations are not eligible to enter.

How to Apply

Complete the online entry form by September 17th, 2023, ensuring adherence to provided guidelines.

Guidelines for Submission:

  1. Individual and Team Entry: Each entrant may participate only once, either as an individual or as part of a team. If entering as a team, designate one member as the team leader and main contact, and another as the secondary contact.
  2. Concept Note Submission: Applicants should submit a concept note in a maximum of 3 pages (excluding the cover page). Use Times New Roman font, Font Size 12, and Single Spacing. The concept note should comprise the following sections:
  • Executive Summary: Briefly outline your business concept, its value proposition, and the problem it aims to solve.
  • Business Description: Describe your business’s nature, mission, vision, and objectives.
  • Market Analysis: Summarize the target market, its size, key trends, and any unique insights.
  • Value Proposition: Clearly articulate your business’s unique value and differentiators.
  • Revenue Model: Concisely explain how your business will generate revenue.
  • Marketing and Sales Strategy: Outline key marketing and sales approaches for reaching your target audience.
  • Operational Plan: Briefly discuss the core operational aspects of your business.
  • Financial Projections: Include key financial projections and highlights from your financial forecast.
  • Team and Expertise: Introduce core team members and their relevant expertise.
  • Risk Assessment and Mitigation: Acknowledge potential risks and briefly describe your plans to address them.
  1. Orientation: All participants must attend a virtual Orientation Q & A Session.
  2. Training Workshops: All eligible individual entrants and either the leader or secondary member of an eligible team must attend all business plan training sessions.
  3. Entry Forms: Applicants must complete the entry forms by no later than September 17th, 2023, at 11:59 PM.
  4. Presentation: All presenting competitors must attend the elevator pitch presentation in person.
  5. Judging Criteria: Applicants must read and become familiar with the Judging Criteria and assessment rubric.
  6. Disqualification: Violation of any one or multiple eligibility rules will result in disqualification from the competition.

What to expect

  1. Stand a chance to win exciting awards and recognition for innovative solutions.
    • 1st Prize – KES 20,000
    • 2nd Prize – KES 15,000
    • 3rd Prize – KES 10,000
  2. Mentorship and Guidance: Benefit from experienced entrepreneurs and industry experts.
  3. Participation Certificates: All participants will receive certificates of participation.
  4. Networking Opportunities: Connect with fellow entrepreneurs, potential investors, and industry leaders.

Event Schedule

  1. Deadline for Submission: September 17th, 2023
  2. Shortlisted Applicants Notification: September 29th, 2023
  3. Orientation Webinar: October 4th, 2023
  4. Pre-Event Webinars/Workshops: From October 9th, 2023
  5. Pitching Date: November 2nd, 2023
  6. Awards Ceremony: November 3rd, 2023

For any inquiries please email


#FoodNovationChallenge #InnovateForGrowth #InnovationWeek2023

Youth Entrepreneurship Resource Hub