Every week we track the business, tech and investment trends in CPG, retail, restaurants, agriculture, cooking and health, so you don’t have to. Here are some of last week’s top headlines.
After raising Juicero announced it shut down after an unflattering Bloomberg article reported the juice bags didn’t require a $699 machine but could yield almost a full glass of juice when squeezed by hand. In better CPG news, an Eater article revealed that “mindful snack” brands are gaining share in 62 percent of the top 50 packaged food categories. This seems to be true for the organic chickpea puff company, Hippeas, which is looking to become a $100 million brand in the next three to five years. Capital continues to rise in the meat-free sector, as food giant Nestle acquired plant-based food maker Sweet Earth and frozen-food company Amy’s launched America’s first vegetarian fast-food restaurant.
In the retail space, customers are flocking to Whole Foods with new price drops since Amazon’s official acquisition. The real price could also run at the cost of food producers, grocery store competitors and, ultimately, the American workforce.
Lastly, Silicon Valley execs experiment with intermittent fasting, or what they call ‘biohacking.’ Ikea’s “future-living lab” Space10 in Copenhagen develops an Algae Dome to combat issues around the world like malnutrition and climate change.
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After raising around $135 million in venture funding, the San Francisco-based startup announced it was shutting down and looking for a sale. A new report by Bloomberg finds that the shuttering was the culmination of unsustainable costs, slow sales and unflattering media reports.
A growing number of Silicon Valley execs are experimenting with intermittent fasting, claiming benefits including weight loss, fewer mood swings and improved productivity.
Northern California-based Amy’s Drive Thru is America’s first vegetarian, organic, gluten-free-optional fast-food restaurant. It has been a runaway success–much to the surprise of the owners, who now hope to take it nationwide.
The organic chickpea puff company is generating monthly revenues just shy of a million dollars. Founder Livio Bisterzo reckons it could generate $25-30m in the next year.
Smaller “mindful snack” brands are showing strong momentum, gaining share in 62% of the top 50 packaged food categories. CPG companies with less than $5m in sales gained 2.7 points of market share since 2011, representing $18.1b in aggregate sales growth.
The suddenly lower prices at Whole Foods could be dwarfed by the pain felt by food producers, grocery store competitors and, ultimately, the American workforce.
Sweet Earth, a plant-based food manufacturer with nearly 50 products, was acquired for an undisclosed amount and will remain independent with support from Nestle.
Ikea’s “future-living” lab in Copenhagen developed the bioreactor to explore the potential that algae will have on the future of food and sustainability.