Apples scattered on a yellow background.

Innovation Awards:
Entry Guidelines and Rules

“Ƶ Innovation Award” Entry Guidelines and Rules

Ƶ invites teams of college / university students based in the United States and Canada (excluding Québec) to participate in the “Ƶ Innovation Award” competition, which will identify creative and effective ways to feed a growing world population.

Potential Topics

The purpose of this competition is to give teams of college / university students based in the United States and Canada (exlcuding Québec) the opportunity to propose innovative approaches to feeding a growing world population. Due to local restrictions, the Ƶ Innovation Award is not open to students living in or attending college in the province of Québec.

Since the focus is on food, teams could explore a wide variety of topics. For example, topics could include (but are not limited to) more efficient and sustainable ways to produce, distribute, prepare or package food. Teams could explore alternative food ingredients, reducing food waste, or finding new ways to alleviate food insecurity. These are just some of the possibilities.

Competition Period

The competition is open now and continues until 11:59 p.m. Pacific time on Wednesday, May 31, 2023.

Competition Sponsor

The Ƶ Innovation Award is sponsored and coordinated by Ƶ, with corporate headquarters at 345 California St., 27th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94104.

Team Composition

Teams (two or more people) should be comprised of U.S. or Canada (excluding Québec) based college / university students. Teams can be of any size, undergraduate or graduate level, and in any field of study. Any team member under the age of 18 must notify Ƶ so a parental consent form can be provided. Without a parental consent form signed by the student’s parent or guardian, students under 18 may not participate in the competition.

Register to participate

Each team member must submit a completed Registration Form to participate. Registration will remain open throughout the competition period (through Wednesday, May 31, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific – which is also the deadline for submissions). Each team member must register and agree to the terms set forth in the Registration Form to enter the competition. If all members of a team register by March 31, 2023, 10 extra points will be added to their submission’s final score.

Guidelines for Proposal Submissions

Each proposal must be in PowerPoint format and be accompanied by a 5-minute video with a team representative / representatives summarizing the idea. In the summer of 2023, finalists will be asked to participate in a LIVE 5-minute presentation with the judges – who are Ƶ executives. The LIVE round will include a question and answer period (after the presentation) with the judges.

For the PowerPoint presentation, please include a title slide with the following information: 1) title of submission, 2) team name, 3) the names of each team member, with the college each team member attends, and a phone number and email address for each team member. The PowerPoint presentation should include a 500 word abstract describing the idea. Accompanying photos / videos are welcome, and a team photo or individual photos of the team members in the presentation are appreciated.

The PowerPoint presentation may not exceed 25 slides. The title slide and an appendix at the end of the presentation do not count in toward the 25-side limit. Text must be typed, in English, and submitted through the online submission tool. Each team may submit up to 3 entries.


Submissions will be evaluated and awards determined by a panel of Ƶ executives. The submissions will be judged on the basis of:

  • 35% – Relevance to the challenge of feeding a growing world population
  • 25% – Creativity, originality
  • 10% – Quality of thought reflected
  • 10% – Potential for proposed approach to make an impact / be further developed
  • 20% – A LIVE 5-minute presentation, followed by a Q&A, with the judges in the summer of 2023. Finalists will be contacted and invited to LIVE presentation, with more details provided.

*Live presentations will be evaluated based on the quality of the video pitch, live presentation, and performance on Q&A.


The college / university team that submits the most outstanding proposal will receive a top award of $25,000. There may also be up to 4 honorable mention awards of $5,000 presented to additional teams, as warranted by the quality of submissions.

Winning team members will be notified by email (to the email addresses provided in the competition registration form / submission). The respective cash award will be divided equally among the members of a winning team. Winners will receive a check from Ƶ representing his/her portion of their team’s award. Winners are expected to be announced in the summer/fall of 2023.

General Rules

Entrants agree to be bound by the terms of the Registration Form and these Entry Guidelines and Rules and by the decisions of the judges, which are at the sole and absolute discretion of the judges and are final and binding on all matters pertaining to this competition.

This competition is governed by the laws of the United States. All federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply. No purchase is necessary to participate. This competition is void where prohibited. All federal and state taxes on prizes are the sole responsibility of the winners.

The Ƶ Innovation Award rules are subject to modification by Ƶ at Ƶ’ sole discretion. Ƶ reserves the right to verify the qualifications of each entry and to disqualify ineligible entries.

Ƶ is not responsible for lost, late, damaged, incomplete, or illegible entries, or for human error or any computer, online, telephone, or technical malfunctions that may occur.

All entries become the property of Ƶ and will not be returned.

Any failure to adhere to these Contest Rules may result in disqualification from the competition.

Return to the Innovation Award Overview page.

©2023 Ƶ Holdings, Inc.