Food Venture Lab

Food Venture Lab

Venture Innovation Program

Jan 27 - May 4

15 weeks

Brief Description

Today, like never before, the food sector is ripe for ideas that have the power to reach beyond disruption to build new, sustainable business models that change the way we farm, shop and eat. Food Venture Lab is a rigorous, fast-paced program designed to enable future food industry leaders to identify and define pressing challenges and unmet needs in the broader food system and develop market-based, entrepreneurial ventures to solve them.

During a 15 week session, this team-based and hands-on course will introduce you to the people, the networks and the essential concepts to accelerate your role in the new food economy. We’ll use the disciplines of human-centered design, business model development, lean-launch, and rapid prototyping to explore new food venture concepts in a rapid-paced experiential learning program. Find collaborators to advance your food business idea to become a thriving enterprise or join a team to which you can contribute—regardless, in just 15 weeks, you will incubate a breakthrough concept through exploration, discovery, design, and launch.

William Rosenzweig

Lead Faculty | Dean of FBS

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Your Takeaway

  • Clarity and confidence in yourself and your new venture
  • Ability to see and think as a “systems” leader
  • Skill sets to recognize and dimension new venture opportunities
  • Ability to create a business design and plan that articulates and incorporates your vision, values, and unique value proposition
  • Leadership approaches to amplify and scale positive social impact
  • Develop a credible financial model and proforma projection
  • Quick, efficient and effective ways to discover and develop vital customer insights
  • Holisitic business model design to address the needs of diverse stakeholders
  • Rapid prototyping techniques to test your product and solution
  • Exposure to commercialization, manufacturing and distribution best practices
  • Investor-ready pitch presentation

Location, Dates & Fees

Financial District
San Francisco, CA

January 27 – May 4, 2016
Course involves two in-person meetings per month in addition to self-organized team work-sessions

Wednesdays 6:30-9:30PM
In-person meetings: January 27, February 10, February 24, March 9, March 23, April 6, April 20, & May 4
$3,500 USD Individual
$5,000 USD Team of Two From Related Enterprise

Special tuition pricing available for CIA Alumni.
For more information, contact our Admissions Team at or 1-866-242-9876.


Have questions?
Sign up for an Online Open House or contact our Admissions Team at or 1-866-242-9876.

Who It's For

People serious about taking an entrepreneurial leap into the food industry and making a real difference in our global food economy. Whether you already have a presentation-worthy business plan, or are simply looking to join a team working to solve some of the most pressing issues of our time, this is your opportunity to work with quality mentors, expand your practice and deepen your experience with industry experts, test the validity of your ideas, and build your network with like-minded leaders in the food industry.

Food entrepreneurs would be well served to envision themselves as stewards, rather than hackers or disruptors.

– FBS Dean Will Rosenzweig on the #FutureOfFood


FBS’ Food Venture Lab is designed for aspiring entrepreneurs and future food economy professionals ready to take their ideas to the food industry market place. In the course of 15 weeks you’ll work in a hands-on “idea lab” with a focus on delivering real-world results. You’ll combine business theory with an emphasis on practical applications of how to bring a new food idea to the market. Using your own interests, expertise, and ideas for a food business, you will identify and define pressing challenges and unmet needs in the broader food-system then develop market-based, entrepreneurial ventures to solve them.

The course is lead by Will Rosenzweig, long-time faculty member at Berkeley Haas and Dean of FBS, and will feature guest lectures from FBS’s extensive network of venture capital, and food business contacts. Teams will present their progress to colleagues in class and visiting guest experts who provide rigorous feedback. In-class presentations are supplemented with food industry on-site visits. As a culminating activity, each team will present to a panel of professional experts and investors to receive feedback on the viability and potential for their venture.

(Faculty and guest experts subject to change.)

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