Apeel Sciences, a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer and recognized among TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions and Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas, announced a $250 million round of new funding and a $1 billion valuation.
GIC led the most current capital raise, and with previous investment from Oprah Winfrey in 2019 and others, it brings the company’s valuation to over one billion dollars. The new financing will enable the company to continue tackling the food waste problem on the global level. In 2020, Apeel is on track to save 20 million pieces of fruit from going to waste at retail stores, while also extending shelf-life in the home where food waste rates are three times as high.
Founded in 2012, the company develops rot-reduction coatings for produce available at top food retailers in the United States and Europe. The coatings are plant-derived and double or triple the shelf life of many fruits and vegetables, without needing refrigeration, the company said in a written statement.
This year, Apeel said it is on track to save 20 million pieces of fruit from going to waste at retailers, as well as in homes, where food waste rates are three times as high.
Apeel is on a mission to combat food waste by using its plant-derived solution to add a little extra “peel” to the surface of fruits and vegetables, doubling to tripling the shelf life of many produce types without the need for refrigeration.
An updated report by Project Drawdown recently identified the reduction of food waste as the number one solution to address climate change based on the greenhouse gases emitted from both the production of food and having it ultimately decompose in a landfill.
Apeel dramatically reduces food waste throughout almost every step of the supply chain — from packer to retailer and ultimately to consumers at home — thereby increasing the efficiency of Earth’s resources required to feed a global population. While driving value for U.S. and European produce suppliers and retailers will remain a top priority, Apeel’s funding also ensures greater support of the company’s initiatives in economies in Sub-Saharan Africa, Central and South America that are at greater risk of food security issues and food waste.
In recent weeks, COVID-19 and its vast personal and economic impact have caused major disruptions in the food supply chain.
Understanding the resources and functions required to grow, produce and move food through the system has made the need to safeguard our precious food supply more apparent than ever. The current food system is calibrated so closely to past supply and demand expectations and the exact perishability of fresh produce that when the system is stretched, the system breaks.
By introducing more time, access and freshness across the supply chain, Apeel’s technology extends value and increases operational flexibility for suppliers and retailers. Additionally, shoppers who are more cognizant of their own personal food supply can bring home high quality produce with a longer window to enjoy it.
Apeel’s news follows another sustainable food startup, San Francisco-based Imperfect Foods, which said it raised $72 million in Series C funding on May 20, led by Insight Partners.
Sources: crunchbase news and Blue Book Services