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[IN] AGR EDU HED
-- WITH PHOTO -- TO EDUCATION, AND NATIONAL EDITORS:
Innovative mushroom farming in Vietnam wins the day at University of
Washington social entrepreneurship competition
SEATTLE, March 3, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Fargreen, a social
enterprise using technology to convert rice straw waste into a product
that can be used for mushroom farming, edged out five other finalist
teams to win the grand prize of $12,500 at the University of
Washington's Global Social Entrepreneurship Competition, held last
week in Seattle.
The grand prize, sponsored by Microsoft and the Seattle International
Foundation, was presented by James Rooney, Senior Manager at
Microsoft's Technology for Good program. Rooney credited Fargreen
co-founders Trang Tran and Tanmay Milind Telang, both MBA students at
Colorado State University, with "combining a great idea with a solid
The business model presented by Tran and Telang would reduce
greenhouse gases produced by the burning of rice straw waste - 20
million tons annually according to the team - while creating an
opportunity for farmers to diversify their crop yields and gain
additional income by growing and selling mushrooms.
"We plan to use the prize money to build our first mushroom facilities
for ten farmers who already signed up to be in our network," said
Tran. "The construction and production will happen this summer."
Fargreen was one of 20 teams selected from a pool of 160 submissions
to attend the 10th year of the competition hosted by the Global
Business Center at the University of Washington's Foster School of
Business. Since its inception, students from 63 countries have
submitted proposals for sustainable business solutions to problems of
The second place team, Bhitti, was made up of students from the
University of Dhaka. Bhitti utilizes sugarcane bagasse, an
agricultural by-product, to manufacture environmentally friendly,
affordable and sustainable materials for construction. Winners of
this year's $10,000 Global Health Prize, presented by the University
of Washington's Department of Global Health, was AYUDA Ready-to-Eat
Food Bar, a team from Ateneo de Manila University producing a
nutrition-dense food bar intended for victims of natural disasters.
For more information about the Global Social Entrepreneurship
Competition and the Foster School of Business, visit
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