From a palm oil alternative and a handheld x-ray to an animal-free egg white and a repurposed airport, the seventh annual awards honor creative solutions to some of the biggest issues facing us today.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA (May 2, 2023) – The winners of Fast Company’s 2023 World Changing Ideas Awards were announced today, honoring sustainable designs, innovative products, bold social initiatives, and other creative projects that are changing the way we work, live, and interact with the world.
Forage, both a winner in the Software Category and a finalist in the 0-4 Years in Business Category, is a mission-driven payments company helping businesses accept government benefits through a single, unified API. Starting with SNAP EBT (food stamps), Forage partners with retailers to enable the 42M Americans who receive government assistance to buy groceries online. With online grocery rates for households making less than $35k continuing to rise, the need for retailers to accept SNAP EBT online has never been greater.
This year’s World Changing Ideas Awards showcase 45 winners, 216 finalists, and more than 300 honorable mentions—with health, climate, energy, and AI among the most popular categories. A panel of Fast Company editors and reporters selected winners and finalists from a pool of more than 2,200 entries across urban design, education, nature, politics, technology, corporate social responsibility, and more. Several new categories were added this year including rapid response, crypto and blockchain, agriculture, and workplace. The 2023 awards feature entries from across the globe, from Italy to Singapore to New Zealand.
Fast Company’s Spring 2023 issue (on newsstands May 9, 2023) will showcase some of the world’s most inventive entrepreneurs and forward-thinking companies that are actively tackling global challenges. The solutions cover everything from water reuse in urban environments and modular housing to an initiative combating book bans and a program that spotlights trans-friendly salons around the world.
"We are so honored to be recognized by Fast Company as a 'World Changing Idea," says Forage Co-Founder and CEO, Ofek Lavian. "Forage's mission is to democratize access to government benefits, and we aim to do so by unlocking government payments online. By increasing online accessibility, we can help equalize access to healthy, affordable groceries and connect households and retailers alike to the digital economy. We believe we're making a positive difference at the intersection of technology, macroeconomics, and public policy, and we are humbled to be recognized by Fast Company for our work and mission."
“It’s thrilling to see the creativity and innovation that are so abundant among this year’s honorees,” says Fast Company editor-in-chief Brendan Vaughan. “While it’s easy to feel discouraged by the state of the world, the entrepreneurs, companies, and nonprofits featured in this package show the limitless potential to address society’s most urgent problems. Our journalists have highlighted some of the most exciting and impactful work being done today—from housing to equity to sustainability—and we look forward to seeing not only how these projects evolve but how they inspire others to develop solutions of their own.”
Forage is a mission-driven payments company that is helping merchants accept government benefits through a single, unified API. Today, over 42 million Americans receive government assistance (ex: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP) to buy groceries. Starting with enabling EBT SNAP online, Forage builds the financial infrastructure empowering merchants of all shapes and sizes to serve these shoppers online.
About the World Changing Ideas Awards
World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company’s major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners, finalists, and honorable mentions based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With the goals of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start working on solving the problems that affect us all.