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Trends in Food Science & Technology
Vol. 79, 2018, Pages: 204-213

Overcoming barriers to innovation in food and agricultural biotechnology

Matthew S.Dahabieh, Stefanie Bröring, Elicia Maine

Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada.


The food and agricultural biotechnology (FAB) sector is poised to respond to some of society's most pressing challenges, including food security, climate change, population growth, and resource limitation. However, to realize this promise, substantial barriers to innovation must be overcome. Here, we draw upon industry experience and innovation management literature to analyze FAB innovation challenges, as well relevant frameworks for their resolution. In doing so, we identify two major FAB innovation challenges: specialized adoption uncertainty, and complex product-market fit across convergent value chains. We propose that these innovation challenges may be overcome by 1) prioritizing the establishment of organizational and social technology legitimacy, and 2) leveraging technology-market matching methods and open innovation practices.

Keywords: Food and agricultural biotechnology, Innovation management, Adoption barriers, Uncertainty analysis, Technology-market matching, Convergence-driven value chains, Open innovation, Product-market fit.

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