Rockefeller Foundation Cassava Innovation Challenge 2016

Deadline: July 8, 2016

Welcome to The Rockefeller Foundation Cassava Innovation Challenge, a global competition offering up to $1 million in funding to novel solutions that can increase the shelf life of cassava in Nigeria.

The primary objective of the Challenge is to surface and implement solutions – product, technological, process and service innovations – that can significantly enhance the shelf life of cassava in Nigeria, here defined as the time it takes for cassava to be rendered unsaleable due to physical deterioration following harvest.

Why Cassava and Nigeria?

Cassava is critical for food security in Africa and is the main source of nutrition for around half of the continent’s population, more than 500 million people. However, this root crop has a very short shelf life and, if unprocessed, will spoil within 72 hours after harvest.

In Nigeria—the world’s largest cassava producer (more than 20 percent of global production, producing more than 50 million tons annually)—nearly 30 million smallholder farmers grow cassava. There’s limited access to existing varieties of cassava, almost no preservation from harvesting to processing, and processing is far away, which leads to spoilage.


  • The Challenge will provide up to $1 million, as well as technical assistance from Dalberg and IITA, to further develop novel solutions that increase shelf life.


  • The Challenge is open to all organizations—whether for-profit or nonprofit—including governmental and inter-governmental organizations.
  • Collaborations between organizations are encouraged. Where such collaboration exists, one lead applicant must submit on the behalf of the group.
  • See Official Rules.

Application Process

If you cannot find the information that you’re looking for, write to

For more information, read FAQ or visit Rockefeller Foundation Cassava Innovation Challenge.