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Olympia Yarger, founder and CEO of GoTerra, is converting food waste into livestock feed by using robots, AI, and maggots. Yes, maggots. After years of working across many different agriculture sectors, Olympia knew she wanted to find a new way to help farmers and make farms more efficient. It was only when she starting farming insects to feed her own poultry that she stumbled upon the solution. She was blown away by how difficult insect farming was and decided to engineer her own fix; she ended up developing a high-tech solution in which maggots in robot-run automated capsules turn food waste into animal feed and fertiliser. Olympia welded the first prototype herself and GoTerra was born. Since founding GoTerra in 2016, she’s steadily scaled operations and recently completed a $6 million Series A round of funding with Grok Ventures and Tenacious Ventures to fuel future growth. Olympia is living proof that with time, passion, and tenacity, you can solve big problems.
Some specific topics touched upon in Phaedon’s interview with Olympia include: the nitty-gritty of how GoTerra’s capsules work and the business model, why GoTerra is trying to enact change without disruption, how Olympia transitioned from agriculture to tech, why naivety sometimes beats knowledge, how she inspired her early team to join GoTerra, and what the next big steps for her company are.