The Pragmatic Visionary Greg Steltenpohl Prize will award $100,000 annually to food system changemakers
ANAHEIM, California, March 11, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Friends and Family of Natural Products Pioneers and Plant-Based Visionaries Greg Steltenpohl announce the launch of an annual report $100,000 grant for food start-ups. The founder of Odwalla and Califia Farms, who died in March 2021dedicated his life to changing the food system through business.
The Pragmatic Visionary Greg Steltenpohl Prize was awarded by Eli Steltenpohl when her father was honored at the Community Purpose and Impact Awards presented by New Hope Media at the Natural Products Expo in Anaheim, California.
“The natural products industry lost one of our most visionary, creative and passionate advocates when Greg passed away, and it is essential that we continue his mission and work on the right path,” said Gary Hirshberg, co-founder of Stonyfield and friend of 30 years. “Greg believed in the ability to create positive change through business and in the impact the plant-based movement could have on the health of people and the planet. He left us far too soon, but also in a much better and more promising place thanks to his powerful vision, dedication and inventive spirit.”
The Pragmatic Visionary Greg Steltenpohl Prize aims to encourage and support innovators, entrepreneurs and changemakers who are building a more positive, plant-centered food system. The award celebrates vision in action and values manifested through enterprises that generate personal, community and planetary health.
Each year, The Award will present a $100,000 grant to a start-up company to enable or expand the achievements, reach and impact of the recipient’s work. Innovations in any capacity of the “ground to soul” food system will be considered. For more information on the award and how to apply, visit pragmaticvisionaryaward.org.
The award will be presented annually in March at Natural Products Expo West and is organized in conjunction with Plant Futures Initiative, Greg’s last entrepreneurial collaboration before his death. The Plant Futures Initiative is a nonprofit social enterprise that connects college and graduate students to experiential learning opportunities with a network of innovative food and agriculture businesses. He is dedicated to accelerating transitions to sustainable and healthy food systems and developing the future leadership needed to lead the way.
The initiative is organized and advised by the friends and family of Greg Steltenpohl and his colleagues in the health food community. The Steltenpohl Family Foundation and Califia Farms provided core funding. Prize co-founders and advisors include:
- Mike Burbank – Managing Director, Morgan Stanley
- John Foraker – CEO, Once upon a time there was a farm; former CEO, Annie’s Homegrown
- Kiff Gallagher – Former VP Corporate Affairs, Califia and Strategic Comms, Odwalla
- Nina Gheiman – Author; co-founder, Plant Futures Initiative
- Amy Goldsmith – CMO, Halo Healthy Tribes; former President, GK Communications
- Sonia Hendricks – SVP Sales, Califia Farms
- Gary Hirshberg – Co-founder and former CE-Yo, Stonyfield Organic
- Will Rosenzweig – Founder, Republic of Tea; Director, Sustainable Food Initiative, , Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley; Co-Founder, Plant Futures Initiative
- Kenneth Sadowsky – Director, Index, Vita Coco, AID LIVING; Senior Advisor, Verlinvest; “Beverage Whisperer”
- Eli Steltenpohl – Steltenpohl Family Foundation, Board of Directors, Califia Farms
- Jessica Vitale – Co-Founder, Crafted Communications, PR for Califia Farms
SOURCE Plant Futures Initiative