of I2N Challenge Myanmar

In Myanmar, access to affordable, safe and nutritious food has been a big challenge and that has been leading to imbalanced or inadequate consumption of different food groups. To address this issue, Innovative Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) across the food sector play an important role to be able to deliver adequate and diverse, safe, nutritious food to the consumers, especially to the low and middle income communities as there has been an example of how innovative SMEs can positively impact nutrition. In order to do so, the SMEs need to have access to critical services such as business development, market research and finance to be able to effectively design and scale the solutions to these problems. At the moment, the SMEs are struggling to access these support services as the overall business environment is not conducive to scale the solutions in addressing these issues.


SUN Business Network Myanmar which is a movement to support national leadership and collective action to scale up nutrition. Impact Hub Yangon which is a business incubator, creating socio-economic development through social impact and entrepreneurship in Myanmar. These two organizations collaborated together to bring up a program called “The Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar Challenge” for making the support services work for SMEs to sustainably address the issues limiting the availability of safe, diverse and nutritious food.

What is I2N Myanmar Challenge?

The Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar is a MSMEs Challenge Activity from SBN Myanmar that aims to harness the power of innovations by working with SMEs and startups in the food systems to address the systemic issues in the food systems that impact nutrition. The activity aims to provide technical support to SMEs with respect to business and market development and providing them with the platform to develop linkages with investors, academia and the food industry to scale their solutions.


The challenge aims to distill the current discourse of  food innovation to challenge and support SMEs in Myanmar to identify and scale up disruptive, appropriate and commercially viable innovations that can improve the availability of affordable nutritious foods, especially to vulnerable populations.


I2N Challenge will crowd in the broader investment community to channel investment towards the scaling up of transformative innovations in food systems that can spark a fundamental shift in the way food is grown and supplied to consumers by SMEs. I2N Challenge  also aims to crowd in technical assistance partners that can support SMEs to develop and integrate new innovations into existing business models and effectively manage the associated risks and challenges in the adoption of food system innovations.

Innovate to Nourish

Myanmar Challenge

What innovation areas are we looking for?

Some of the examples of these solutions are traceability solutions, food safety tool and technologies, consumer engagement and empowerment solutions etc.

Food Safety

Solutions such as digital platforms, farm to home business models etc.



Product solutions such as fortified food, functional food, healthy food ingredients, bio-fortified seeds etc.




Any solution which can address the problem of high post-harvest losses in nutrient dense value chains such as fruits, vegetables, poultry, meat etc.


Loss Reduction

Solutions to ensure access of workers in factories and offices to access healthy food.


Nutrition & Wellness

Solutions to educate consumers on importance of healthy food and nutrition.

Consumer Awareness & Empowerment


1st Week

Mid September - November


Mid December

December Onwards

August, 2021

Announcement of

Selected SMEs

Capacity Enhancement


Product development

(Training & Mentoring)

Investment Readiness


Pitch Training

Pitch Day


Enterprise Showcase

Matchmaking with

Investors, Partners

and Donors

Call for application


Recruitment of SMEs

Program Timeline



The company is a for profit company. 



The company is a financially viable business (i.e. the business model counts on sales revenues to cover all of the company’s expenses).



The company is an MSME in the post-revenue stage that has generated revenues and turnover of less than USD 500,000.



The company is presenting an innovative solution that aims to develop or adopt technological solutions that address one of the competition challenges.



The company produces and/or distributes nutritious products and/or services for local markets and for human consumption as part of its main business model in the following food value chains: fruits, vegetables & pulses; quality proteins (eggs, dairy, poultry, fish); alternative proteins (example insects); fortified staples and fortified blended foods; nuts and seeds; lean red meat; refined cereals and grains.

Who are we looking for?


Capacity enhancement trainings which tailored to your business needs

Technical Assistance

Technical assistance for product improvement


Mentoring by experts from food technology, business, retail and finance sectors

Investment Readiness

Investment readiness preparation to accelerate your financing and technical needs

Business Showcase

Showcasing your business pitch to potential investors, partners and donors

What can you

Expect from this?

1st Runner-up

USD 1,500

2nd Runner-up

USD 1,000

Winning Prize

USD 2,500

Program Benefits

The I2N Challenge Myanmar will select top 10 MSMEs and Startups and will provide them with targeted technical assistance and capacity enhancement through training, mentorship and provide them the opportunity to pitch their innovative business solutions to a group of investors, support providers and a panel of judges. 


The I2N challenge will culminate in a final Pitch Competition in which the selected SMEs will pitch to investors and a panel of judges to raise investments and win prizes. The Competition Winner and runner up will be awarded with cash prizes award shields. 

  • Recognition in marketing & promotional materials 

  • Organization profile in paid-social media campaign

  • Company branded award (Cash and other prizes)

  • Logo placement (main banner, venue, website, social media)

  • Speech slot on the final Pitch Competition Day

  • Formal appreciation and recognition from the  organizers/certificates

  • Logo on the main banner of the event 

  • Booth space at the event

  • Access to media interview session

  • Logo Placement at Facebook Live Streaming (different package has different frequency and interval)






Technical Support Partners

We are welcoming organizations or companies which can provide technical support to accelerate the development of innovative solutions by I2N Myanmar Challenge 2021 finalists as official technical partners. The areas of technical support we are looking for are

  • Food safety

  • Mobile and Digital Technologies

  • Food Product Development

  • Certification and Process Improvement

  • Logistic and storage

Market Linkage Partners

We are welcoming retailers, wholesalers and online platform to provide access to market for the innovative products and services offered by the finalists of I2N Myanmar Challenge 2021

  • Product displays at store locations

  • Dedicated I2N branded shelf at store locations

  • Market Insights

  • E-commerce Product Highlights

Partnership Benefits

Official partners of I2N Myanmar Challenge will enjoy benefits such as

  • Networking and partnership with key stakeholders, SMEs and entrepreneurs on the final Pitch Competition Day.

  • Market insights and access to investment opportunities.

  • Formal recognition from I2N Myanmar Challenge hosts and partners  including SUN Movement  and World Food Progamme.

  • Brand visibility on social medias, in-event displays and live-streaming.

  • Chance to work with innovative enterprises in agro-food system.


  • Cash Prizes to Challenge Winner, 1st Runner Up and 2nd Runner Up.

  • Awards and Shields for the winners and finalists

  • Provide Technical Assistance (In cash or in- kind) to support I2N Myanmar Challenge 2021 Top 10 Finalists in business improvement areas.

  • Support specific events/activity during the challenge (We’re open for discussion)


  • Networking and partnership with key stakeholders, SMEs and entrepreneurs on the final Pitch Competition Day.

  • Formal recognition from I2N Myanmar Challenge hosts and partners  including SUN Movement  and World Food Program.

  • Company branded Awards and Prizes, handed over by the CEO with Chief/Key guest of the event.

  • Market insights and access to investment opportunities. 

  • Brand visibility on social medias, in-event displays and live-streaming.


Partners of the I2N Myanmar Challenge 2021 are ideally organizations with a shared interest in entrepreneurship and innovations strengthening across the food systems with a nutrition lens. They can offer their support and resources to the  finalists, winner or runners-ups to scale their innovative solutions, ultimately building the case for greater investment in SMEs and innovations to scale up nutrition in Myanmar.




 I2N Challenge Myanmar is a first ever innovation challenge in Myanmar for SMEs and startups in the food system. The challenge connect the key stakeholders across the food system including private sector, investors, retailers, wholesalers and technical support providers to support startup and SMEs scale up their innovation solutions to improve the availability of affordable nutritious foods, especially to vulnerable populations.


The final Pitch Competition day will be held in December together with representation from international organizations, private sector including business and network association, investors, medias and other key players from food systems.


Thus, it offers a great opportunity for visibility, networking with a wide array of food system stakeholders and access to investment opportunities in growth-oriented innovative SMEs.


Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event will be conducted  with limited seating  for special guests only. The whole event will be live-streamed through Facebook including from paid media channels.


SoyAi is founded with the purpose of producing healthy and protein rich food products, creating job opportunities for youths from monasteries, orphanages and other unemployed youths in Myanmar.

Sweetie Home production is producing probiotic rich natural fermented drinks such as Kefir, Kombucha, Ginger Ale, Enzyme, etc. The nature of having Fermented Drinks on a daily basis has been recently recognized by the local people and foreign experts during the Cvoid-19 Pandemic Period to enhance their immune system and to detox their digestive system as a replacement of high end supplements.

Plan Bee’s goal is to promote responsible and premium quality honey production in Southern Shan State of Myanmar to benefit and empower the livelihoods of farmers in those rural communities. Plan Bee, moreover, aims at creating sustainable high-quality organic honey industry in Myanmar and put Myanmar on the global map of honey producing nations.

Tin Aung Zaw Company is planting over 5000 Sein Ta Lone Mango Trees and Nan Dok Mai Mango Trees within 200 acres of plot in Nay Pyi Taw. They have received water dropping planting technology with the RBF aid of Denmark citizens. This Nay Pyi Taw farm also got the GAP certificate. The nearby farms usually buy some of the mangos. They sell fresh mangoes, dried mangoes, dried local bamboo shoots, sour bamboo shoots. Most of the laborers are women and the resellers are also women.

Fedwell Foods is a Burmese-registered and Burmese-owned business that operates as a social enterprise and generates 25,000 meals per day of the main products; Alpha Protein Soup, Vegetable Protein Soup, and Cabbage Pea Noodle Soup. Most sales have been to non-government agencies which handle distribution of the product to areas requiring food relief (orphan homes, internally displaced people camps, disaster relief, etc.)

Village Link is the leading agriculture technology company in Myanmar that prides itself in enabling Myanmar’s agricultural and rural communities using digital technology. Harnessing advanced satellite capabilities, the knowledge pool of agricultural and meteorological experts, and the extensive partner networks, we deliver precision farming advisory and market access to individual smallholders across the country.

Lwin Fresh Egg and Century Egg business is distributing their chicken eggs and duck eggs from Nyaung Na Pin Farm to Yangon Region as well as Pyi, Mawlamyine Townships. Moreover, they also sell to retailers, home shops, donations, bakery and restaurants as well.

Coffee Cherry Brand has been exporting their Coffee Green Beans to Japan, Korea, China and Thailand market and starting from 2014-2015, they have been distributing value added products to both local and foreign markets with the name of “Coffee Cherry Brand”. The motto of Coffee Cherry Brand is “Healthy Daily Life Pass with Coffee Cherry” so they aim to replace healthy pure coffee instead of coffee mix.

Tun Yat is an on-demand rental service agri-tech service provider that has been operating in
Myanmar for 4 years to provide affordable and reliable services targeting lower-income farmers.
They are the first tech-enabled platform to build a market place between tractor owners, tractor
dealers and farmers. Their IoT sensor devices that attach to machines will collect more accurate
machine utilization data that tractor dealers and banks who lend out for tractor loans want to

New A1 Family Factory produces premium quality pure and fresh chili powder, turmeric powder,
other culinary crops and spices with international food safety standards by providing healthy,
aflatoxin free, chemical free, with no additive and no preservative chili and turmeric powder and
other spices with affordable prices. They are distributing their products to supermarkets and
minimarts in Yangon, Mandalay and Naypyidaw through Modern trade and to the other
groceries, wholesale and retail shops from the whole country.

Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar Challenge 2021

Final Pitching Competition

The Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar Challenge 2021 Final Pitching Competition was held on the 23rd of December 2021 at the Chatrium Hotel from 9AM to 4PM. The event was conducted strictly in line with Covid-19 rules and regulations. At the final pitching event, the finalists showcased their innovative businesses and pitched their business ideas in front of judges, partners, guests and investors. 

At the event, Mr. Stephen Anderson, Country Director and Representative of the UN World Food Programme delivered the opening remark. Mr. Brett Ballard, the Programme Coordinator of LIFT Myanmar also gave remarks as well as the representatives from each platinum sponsor, Three Stars and Grab Myanmar also gave remarks. Ko Pyae Phyo Aye, the Managing Director of Three Stars, Ma Naw Yu Yu Thi, the Investment Analyst of City Invest and Ko Kyaw Thu Htet, the founder of Myanmar Innovation Life Sciences (MILS) contributed as judges for the pitching of the finalist businesses. The invited investors and guests from respectable organizations attended the event and the finalists businesses got the chance of match making with investors. 

The winner prize was achieved by the Plan Bee Social Enterprise receiving 2500 USD. The 1st Runner Up award was achieved by the New A1 Family Limited receiving 1500 USD and the 2nd Runner Up award was achieved by the Village Link Co., Ltd receiving 1000 USD respectively. The event was concluded with the closing remark by SBN Board Member, Mr. Alex Nyi Nyi Aung, Head of Communications and External Affairs of Unilever Myanmar. 


The Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar Challenge 2021 Final Pitching Competition was supported by Three Stars, Grab Myanmar, Nature's Bounty Myanmar, City Invest, YKKO, Machine City and technical support partners by Myanmar Innovative Life Sciences (MILS) and Natural Farm Fresh. 


The next challenge of Innovate to Nourish (I2N) Myanmar is expected in 2022-23.


In 2010, the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement was launched to support national leadership and collective action to scale up nutrition. The SUN Business Network (SBN) is one of the four global networks that support SUN countries (along with UN, Civil Society and Donor Networks). It is convened by the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and further supported by an Advisory Group comprised of senior business leaders.


The SBN aims to reduce malnutrition in all its forms through mobilising business to invest and innovate in responsible and sustainable actions and operations. To do this SBN provides a neutral platform to broker partnerships and collaboration between business and all actors on nutrition at national, regional and global level to support SUN Country plans. 

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Contact us

SBN National Coordinator

Dr. Zarni Htet

+95(9)2057961, +95(9)961000481

I2N Challenge Coordinators

Bhone Myat Kyaw

+95(9) 9734 74141

Thazin Htut

+95(9) 9632 87912

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