On November 11, the EIT FOOD Empowering woman in AgriFood project in Lithuania reached its finish line in the most luxurious hotel in Vilnius Pacai. During the event, ten young innovators presented their diverse ideas – from dog perfumes to alternative protein products – that they developed over six months with the help of experienced mentors. According to the patron of the project in Lithuania Kristina Šermukšnytė-Alešiūnienė, who is the Director of the EIT FOOD Center in Lithuania AgriFood Lithuania DIH, it was an incredible half-year journey. Both participants and mentors gained a lot of valuable experience and women showed that they really can be leaders shaping future’s agrifood sector.

Each participant had 5 minutes to present her idea and the same amount of time to answer the questions of the jury and the audience. Finally, the jury decided to award not two – as it was initially planned – but three participants of the program. Milita Žygytė, who is developing a water salad product, was awarded an additional prize established by the members of the jury. Second place and a check of 5,000 euros went to Mildai Savickaitė, who is creating a broth saturated with collagen (mentored by Augustas Alešiūnas, CEO at ART 21). The main prize of 10,000 euros was awarded to Giedre Kesiūnaitė, who made the greatest progress during the 6-month program. Today, her vegan seitan-based food product, which is a great alternative to meat, is already available to everyone who is interested. Giedrė’s mentor was Giedrius Bagušinskas, CEO at Lithuanian Food Exporters Association LitMEA.