Eighth Sabin Venture Prize to Honor Business Ideas that Advance Sustainability

Note: Yale School of the Environment (YSE) was formerly known as the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (F&ES). News articles and events posted prior to July 1, 2020 refer to the School's name at that time.

Sabin award browser
Four startup ideas are finalists for the 2016 Sabin Sustainable Venture Prize, a $25,000 cash prize that supports for-profit business concepts that help achieve a more sustainable way of life.
The winner will be decided on April 15 during the second Entrepreneurship Across Yale event, a two-day series of contests that invite world-changing ideas from across the Yale community.
Other contests include the Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education, sponsored by InnovateHealth Yale; the Miller Prize, sponsored by the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute (YEI); and the Yale Venture Challenge, sponsored by the Yale Entrepreneurial Society (YES).

The Sabin Prize was created by Andrew Sabin, president of the Sabin Family Foundation. It is managed by the Yale Center for Business and the Environment (CBEY), which is based at the Yale School of Forestry & Environment Studies (F&ES) and the Yale School of Management.
“The Sabin and other Yale prizes are encouraging students and faculty to think big about solving global problems,” said Stuart DeCew ’11 M.E.M./M.B.A., program director of CBEY. “Our goal is to provide support and resources to ventures that have the capacity to have a real impact on people and the planet.”
The Sabin competition provides feedback from professional judges, extensive mentoring from faculty, and opportunities for participants to meet and pitch their ideas to venture capitalists and industry leaders. Past winners include an online social platform to expand the adoption of solar power, a software package for improving forest inventory data, and a sustainable protein producer. In addition to the $25,000 prize, winners receive automatic entry into the YEI Fellowship.
Last year, two students from F&ES won the Sabin Prize for their business, Poda Foods, which sells food-grade cricket protein for use in more sustainable food products.
This year, the event will begin at 8:30 a.m. Friday, April 15 at Room 2410 in Evans Hall, 165 Whitney Ave. View the full schedule
Following the presentations, Sam Altman, President of Y Combinator, will present a keynote address at 11:30 a.m. Y Combinator is a renowned Silicon Valley accelerator for seed-stage startups. Successful companies that have participated in Y Combinator’s program include Airbnb, Dropbox and Zenefits.
For more details and to register, click here. | Follow the conversation at #StartupYale

The finalists for the 2016 Sabin Prize are:
Appalachian Roots
Appalachian Roots – Hemp 2.0 is reintroducing a historically significant crop to the coalfields of Eastern Kentucky at a time when it is needed most, its founders say. By connecting mountain farmers with high-value markets and innovative growing techniques, they, say, new economic opportunity will be developed in the wake of the coal industry’s downturn.      
Hugo & Hoby
Hugo & Hoby is an e-commerce company partnering with the country’s best foresters, designers, and craftspeople to build beautiful, sustainable, and thoughtful furniture and home furnishings. Each design is built just-in-time and in small batches, allowing the company to deliver handcrafted quality and durable materials to customers at wholesale prices. 
Renewal Mill
Renewal Mill harnesses undervalued waste streams from current food production processes to create nutritious and wholesome products. Its goal is to tackle the food waste challenge through culinary innovation and creativity. Renewal Mill is working to identify and harness the most promising waste streams from food manufacturing to make new wholesome and nutritious products. They are beginning the venture using okara, a nourishing mix of fiber and protein that is left behind when soy milk is strained from cooked and blended soy beans.

Smart Air Filters
Smart Air Filters has found that by fitting a HEPA filter to a household fan it can create a simple yet effective air purifier. Its mission is to share this knowledge and help people have access to clean air affordably. The business is focused on countries where air pollution is a major problem and people are most in need.