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Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge Rules and Regulations

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The Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge Official Rules and Regulations 2024


ARTICLE 1: OBJECT

The Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge aims to reward innovative projects within the nutraceutical industry, by offering startups the opportunity to develop their activities through a specialised support program.

This contest is open to all startups with innovations targeting the health and nutrition sector with a focus on any of the following:

  • Ground-breaking finished nutraceutical products and ingredients for nutraceuticals, supplements, or functional food and beverages  
  • Innovative technologies, services, and digital solutions that support the health and wellbeing industry

ARTICLE 2: ORGANISER

The Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge is organised by Informa Markets BV, WTC, Tower Ten - 7th floor, Strawinskylaan 763, 1077 XX Amsterdam (Organiser).

ARTICLE 3: CANDIDATES

Any company or project leader involved in developing a new activity or innovative project within the nutraceutical sector can take part in the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge (Candidate).

ARTICLE 4: ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA

The Organiser considers as a ‘new activity or innovative project’ the following:

  • the startup should be no older than 5 years;
  • the startup must have a clear business plan and a developed concept and, at the very least, prototypes or final products are preferred; and
  • the product or service needs to be truly ground-breaking and unique.

The Challenge is not open to entry by any employee of the Organiser, their families, agents or any third party directly associated with administration of the Challenge. 

ARTICLE 5: PARTICIPATION CONDITIONS

Participation is free and no purchase is necessary.

ARTICLE 6: CANDIDACY CONDITIONS

Entries to the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge will be open from 1 January to 1 March 2024.

To be considered as a ‘Candidate’ to the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge, startups need to follow the Rules and Regulations of the contest, as outlined in this document. The following steps will apply:

Step 1: Online registration

All startups are required to submit information about themselves and their company’s innovative project via the online registration form. The requested information includes:

  • Contact information
  • Company information
  • Short description of the product or service for the submission that highlights the innovative element of this product or service (max. 300 words)
  • Signed Rules and Regulations: A signed copy of this Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge Rules and Regulations 2024 document.
  • Business Plan (BP): The BP must provide your potential market figures, description of your competitors, as well as your financial plan.
  • One-minute video: This pitch should provide a short description of your product or innovation which will be considered when selecting the shortlisted companies. (optional)
  • Additional information: Any technical and / or sales documents that you have developed, such as commercial documentation, advertising, investor presentations, etc.

Any information you share with the jury must be up to date and accurate, to the best of the entrant’s knowledge.

Each Candidate is considered once the application form and Business Plan are received. Only the complete files will be considered.

If your project is not accepted, you will not take part in the contest.

If your project is accepted, you become an official Candidate to the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge 2024.

The registration deadline for the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge 2024 is Friday, 1 March 2024.

Step 2: Jury & selection process

Once entries to the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge 2024 close, the jury will review all applications by official Candidates.

A maximum of 20 startup finalists will be chosen. Only the selected finalists will be invited to pitch to the jury in May 2024 and stand a chance to be crowned as category winners. The list of categories is outlined in Section 9 below.

Selections will be based on the information submitted by Candidates during the application process. Therefore, make sure you include as much supporting information with your application as possible to showcase your innovation to the jury and assist with the selection process.

The jury is made up of a mix of the following health and nutrition experts:

  • R&D experts from research institutes
  • Nutraceutical ingredient companies
  • Regulatory experts
  • Banks / Venture Capitalists
  • Startup Incubators / accelerators / supporters

If one of the jury members has, themselves or as a collaborator, entered as a Candidate, they are no longer allowed to vote.

Step 3: Category winners

To identify the winner(s), finalists will be ranked by the jury based on the following:

  • The information and supporting evidence shared during the application process.
  • A presentation given by the finalist(s) to the jury in private. The presentation must last no more than 5 minutes and will be followed by a Q & A session (10 minutes). Startups will present their projects live during a closed session to the jury, the date and time of which will be communicated with finalists once selections have been finalised.

At the end of all the category presentations, the jury will decide the winner(s). All jury discussions are confidential, and their decision is final.

Additionally, all finalists will be invited to give a live pitch at the in-person Vitafoods Europe 2024 event to visitors and exhibitors of the show at the Vitafoods Insights Stage. This pitch should last no more than 3 minutes.

Winners will be announced live during Vitafoods Europe 2024.


ARTICLE 7: CANCELLATION OF THE CANDIDACY

A candidacy can be withdrawn by the Organisation Committee if the documents submitted by the Candidate are proven to be false or inaccurate.  The Organiser reserves the right to refuse entry or refuse to award a prize to anyone who breaches any of the rules of the competition, including any of the terms of these Official Rules and Regulations. In this case, the Organisation Committee can revoke any decision or award and may publicize the revocation or prize cancellation to the media.

A Candidate may cancel its candidacy at any time if the Candidate enters any financial distress (administration, bankruptcy or otherwise).

The Organiser accepts no responsibility for entries that are not successfully completed due to a technical fault, technical malfunction, computer hardware or software failure, satellite, network, or server failure of any kind.

ARTICLE 8: SELECTION AND AWARDS

Candidates will be informed of their selection as finalists, if successful, by email or other communication. The jury’s decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into in respect of the decision of the jury.  However, any unsuccessful entrant or Candidate may request reasonable feedback from the Organiser in respect of their entry. 

The finalists commit themselves to present their project live during a closed session to the jury on Monday, 13 May 2024.

The finalists also commit to present their project (depending on their category) live to attendees at the in-person Vitafoods Europe 2024 event hosted in Geneva, Switzerland, running from 14 –16 May 2024. Pitches must be presented in-person to visitors and exhibitors of the show. This pitch should last no longer than 3 minutes.

ARTICLE 9: CATEGORIES AND AWARDS

One winner will be announced for each category. Startups can select multiple categories but will only compete in one. Where startups apply for more than one category, the final category selection will be determined by the shortlisting jury.

- Most Innovative Finished Nutraceutical Product
This category covers finished nutraceutical products offering innovation in ingredient composition, consumer focus, or delivery format.

- Most Innovative Nutraceutical Ingredient
This category covers innovative ingredients for nutraceuticals, supplements, or functional food and beverages that can offer scientific substantiation of their efficacy.   

- Most Innovative Service, Technology, or Digital Solution Supporting the Nutraceutical Industry
This category covers innovations that support improvements in ingredients sourcing and production, food safety and quality, traceability, transparency, smart packaging, supply chain management, or digital solutions supporting the nutraceutical industry.

In addition to the above-mentioned categories, a special jury’s choice award will also be awarded to one of the startup finalists, as listed below.

- Most Innovative Sustainable Solution – Jury’s choice award
This special prize will be awarded to the startup with the most sustainable innovation. All startup finalists across all categories can be considered for this award, with the winners being decided by the expert jury. The startups’ overall sustainability efforts will be considered.  

Each winner can select one of the prizes on offer as listed on the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge website. The prize for each winner is non-exchangeable, non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.

The Organiser reserves the right to replace the prize with an alternative prize of equal or higher value if circumstances beyond the Organiser's control makes it necessary to do so.

ARTICLE 10: CANDIDATE’S DUTIES

Any company wishing to participate in the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge hereby declares that it:

  • accepts in full the terms and conditions laid down by these Rules and Regulations;
  • certifies that it is in compliance with all applicable tax, anti-corruption, social and environmental law. The company undertakes to provide, upon request, evidence of compliance with the regulations in force and marketing during the above period;
  • confirms that it has all necessary right, title and authority to submit the data, materials and information provided with its entry to the Challenge;
  • confirms that any data, materials or information provided with its entry is correct, accurate and up to date, to the best of its knowledge and belief; and
  • if selected, will be present to support its candidacy during the jury pitches, live pitches/presentation recordings, and the awards ceremony as required.

ARTICLE 11: WARRANTY

The applicant certifies owning (or having any necessary licences or consents in respect of) all the intellectual or industrial property rights (concerning patents, trademarks, designs, and copyright in particular) attached to the project(s) presented and their achievements. They also state that the holder or holders of rights, agree with the participation to the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge and accept these Rules and Regulations.

In any case, the Organiser cannot be held responsible for disputes related to the protection of any intellectual property. The Candidate indemnifies the Organiser against any costs, claims, expenses, or disputes in respect of the holder of any intellectual property rights whatsoever through the signing of this form.

ARTICLE 12: CONFIDENTIALITY AND PUBLICITY

By taking part in the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge, the companies and project leaders allow the Organisation Committee to use the photos, videos and any images of the presented products, the logo as well as all of the business information of the company, as well as the images taken during the event and award ceremony in connection with any promotional activity of the Vitafoods Europe event, the Challenge and/or the Vitafoods brand.

Information regarding the Candidate’s entry will only be available for viewing by the Organiser (including the jury).

Personal data supplied during the course of this promotion will only be processed as set out in the Organiser's Privacy Policy and in accordance with these Rules and Regulations.

ARTICLE 13: CHANGE OF THE RULES AND REGULATIONS

The Organiser’s decision will be final and binding regarding clarification related to any difficulties that may arise from the interpretation and / or application of these Rules and Regulations.

The Organiser reserves the right to make changes to the Rules and Regulations for any reason where necessary, even without notice. The Organiser of the Vitafoods Europe Startup Innovation Challenge also reserves the exclusive and unilateral right to cancel, postpone, terminate, or modify the Challenge without notice.

ARTICLE 14: DISPUTE

Insofar as is permitted by law, the Organiser, its agents or distributors will not in any circumstances be responsible or liable to compensate the winner or accept any liability for any loss, damage, personal injury or death occurring as a result of taking up the prize except where it is caused by the negligence of the Organiser, its agents or distributors or that of their employees. Participants’ statutory rights are not affected.

Should a dispute concerning the validity, interpretation or implementation of the Rules and Regulation arise, the parties shall try to amicably sort out the dispute. If the parties do not reach an amicable settlement, the dispute shall be referred to the exclusive jurisdiction of the appropriate courts in The Netherlands for resolution.

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