When two gaming experts and one social networking founder came together to solve one of the biggest issues in agriculture technology—the intersection of human health and animal health—the result was exactly what you might think: an app.
But make no mistake: “We’re not just playing games here” says Ariel Yi Chi Chang, 2020 30 Under 30 honoree and founder of GeGe Design.
During the Forbes Under 30 Agtech+ Hackathon this past weekend, Chang, along with her teammates, Ashley Deese, 2019 30 Under 30 honoree and manager of digital media at Smithsonian and Kemishia Sorzano, For(bes) The Culture member and founder of Social Tea, were one of three teams tasked to come up with solutions for sustainable agricultural and animal health practices. Their proposal was Happy Herd: an app in which users care for a farm the same way a farmer would. Users manage their currency to select animals, monitor their overall health and make decisions around nutrition.
It might sound like longstanding apps like Farmville, but the three-fold mission is aimed at serving a bigger purpose: It’s meant to increase public awareness and education around farming, funnel funding into agriculture advocacy groups and nonprofits (70% of the proceeds from the game goes directly to these companies) and implement data collection from user methods to help cultivate more sustainable practices for farmers.