Royse Law Incubator Wants to Bridge Tech and Agriculture

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Not everyone wants to get into the app game. Some young entrepreneurs want to rejuvenate one of the oldest industries, agriculture, using modern technologies to fight against drought or food scarcity. These ideas are being bandied about at Royse Law, the first-ever Silicon Valley incubator looking to disrupt, as they say, agricultural and food production.

Founded by Roger Royse, a Bay Area lawyer, and launched on January 2015, the incubator is the brainchild of Silicon Valley AgTech, an association of investors, tech companies, and farmers.

"There is a tremendous opportunity if you consider the potential of the industry," says Royse. "Start up[s] and farmers are now working together to promote new tools to change the work in the fields."

His mission is to connect technology and farming in order to speed up annual production. What's more, Royse is also hunting for start-ups who are building software and new technologies to reduce, for instance, at-home food waste. One example is Foodfu.ly, a company seeking to collaborate with budding entrepreneurs who can help generate clean energy or concept aimed to introduce an automated wireless irrigation and fertilizer injection system.

"For our first program we have received hundreds of applications, and the majority of them were very interesting. Unfortunately we had to select only for 12 applications,"  says Royse.

On May 11, Royse Law Incubator will host the AgTech conference, which draws farmers, industry players, venture capitalists, at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View.

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