Yield Lab Ireland will invest €100,000 in between four-to-six food and agriculture technology (AgTech) companies each year from all over the world.

The food and agriculture technology business accelerator initiative from the US recently set up a base in Ireland and is now accepting applications for 2017.

Companies accepted into the initiative will be required to meet in Co. Galway for two days each month to take part in the six-month accelerator program where they will receive individual mentoring from agriculture industry experts.

These companies will also travel to St. Louis, Missouri in the US for one month of programming to network with the Yield Lab St. Louis 2017 members.

It is hoped this trip will also allow the accepted companies to take advantage of the global connections that the Yield Lab provides, according to Yield Lab Ireland Managing Director Brian Clevinger.

The global network that the Yield Lab is developing is unparalleled in AgTech, and the Yield Lab Ireland is a huge step in solidifying our international relations.

“I cannot wait to see the positive impact that we will be able to have on European AgTech companies in Ireland, as well as the impact that we’ll be able to have on our current portfolio companies from the Americas,” he said.

Applications to the new initiative can be made online, while the deadline for applications will close on February 14.

Meanwhile, former CEO of ABP Food Group, Paul Finnerty was appointed as Chairman of Yield Lab Ireland last year.

Following his retirement, he wanted to continue working to improve production agriculture and to reduce the impact it has on the climate.

Finnerty believes that innovation will be a key industry driver to creating more efficient and nutritious food value chains.

The Yield Lab Ireland is based on the model currently in place in St. Louis, which is an early-stage venture fund and business accelerator that invests $100,000 (€93,733) in early stage food and AgTech startups.

The business accelerator program aims to bring together innovative technologies focused on improving productivity, enhancing knowledge and merging historically independent ecosystems into a more cohesive agricultural system.