A delegation from an agricultural innovation park in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing is seeking to cooperate with Silicon Valley in agriculture technology to address common challenges both countries face.
"Development is the theme; collaboration is the foundation; win-win is the common wish," said Wang Liwen, deputy director-general of the administrative committee of the Nanjing National Agriculture Science and Technology Demonstration Zone, at the Thrive Innovation Summit held Wednesday at Santa Clara University in California.
The delegation, headed by Wang, is visiting Silicon Valley to explore partnership opportunities with agritech innovators in the region.
"The demonstration zone, formally launched in May last year, is China's first state-level agricultural innovation park. We have since been actively seeking investment and talent from the world," said Wang in his speech titled "Chinese market opportunity" at the summit.
The summit has been held for three years since it was founded by an investment advisory firm in Silicon Valley, SVG Partners. It convenes more than 250 business leaders, startups and growers every year to discuss the future of the food and agriculture industry.
It is the first time that a Chinese delegation has been invited to promote Chinese market opportunity at this summit.
Wang said that the demonstration zone will be built into a center for research, technology transformation, talent and innovation. "It will become China's agricultural Silicon Valley, linking the world's business opportunities," he said.
"We call here (Silicon Valley) the center of what's possible," said Santa Clara Mayor Lisa Gillmor at the summit. "We are a small city, but we have a rich history, especially of agriculture."
She encouraged cooperation in the agritech sector to drive changes through innovation and "move boldly towards the future."
The demonstration zone has established a partnership with SVG Partners to build a bridge between the two sides, according to Wang.
During the summit, executives from agriculture companies and investors discussed topics such as agritech investment and trends, digital transformation, the future of livestock and artificial intelligence for agriculture.
A showcase of startups related to food safety and precision farming was held on the sidelines of the summit.
"Our focus is on solving some of the biggest challenges from farm to fork," said John Hartnett, the founder and CEO of SVG Partners. He has recently been appointed to the expert committee of the Nanjing demonstration zone.
As the presenter of the Thrive Innovation Summit, SVG Venture-Thrive, an agrifood innovation accelerator program, has engaged with more than 1,500 startups from 67 countries since 2011.
After the four-month accelerator program, the selected companies will showcase their technologies at the Thrive Demo Day event in June in Salinas, California.