Supply chain startups: from easier procurement to ingredient optimization

Supply chain startups: from easier procurement to ingredient optimization

By
Sam Panzer
September 13, 2021

Startups solving supply chain pains

“Permanent” food shortages in the UK. A 32.9% increase in food prices since last year. A global shortage of truckers as high as 20% in Asia (and 100,000 in Britain).

Stuff ain’t moving like it used to. Our supply chains are more complicated and less stable than ever, making shopping & eating less certain, and more expensive. 

The supply chain disruption we covered last week is indeed a global, systemic problem, and solving it will require thousands of changes, from small everyday choices to massive realignments of how companies and governments act.

Changing towards a more secure and resilient food system will also require new companies to solve hard problems. That’s why this week, we’re rounding up a few startups that are working to make things better in food supply chains –– including easier procurement, ingredient optimization, and direct-to-consumer platforms between producer and eater.

(Today's word count: 1,328 words or a 7-minute read)

Procurement Platforms:

These startups help restaurants and manufacturers efficiently order from their suppliers. Restaurant ordering is an old-school game, with restaurants placing orders by phone, fax, or email and then hoping the right stuff comes off the truck. 

But with one major restaurant supplier reporting nearly 50% of their deliveries are now late amid supply chain pains, restaurants are more willing than ever to switch to something new. Of course, restaurants themselves are still hurting, meaning the restaurant procurement segment is struggling to monetize and has been dealt out of the booming investment game.

Most procurement startups are platforms which require participation from both restaurants and suppliers. Platform players only offer value with a critical mass of users, meaning these companies typically start in a specific region before expanding, and desperately need to build some momentum to get off the ground.

But platforms are challenging, requiring behavior changes from everybody involved. Once users are there, they’re sticky –– that’s why craigslist can get by looking like the hottest html 1995 had to offer.

Procurement Platforms: Who?

🍫 Choco: Berlin’s red-hot restaurant ordering platform grew 4x in the last year with nearly $1B in platform transactions, raising a $100M Series B in late July. Like many players in the space, they emphasize that efficient ordering saves $ and reduces waste. The service is free for restaurants and suppliers, with a premium option available to suppliers.  

🍳 ChefsList: another Berlin entrant, ChefsList has strong retail and restaurant partners without publicly-reported fundraising. 

🗒️ SupplyNote: the Indian startup focuses on a cloud-based solution integrated with their point-of-sales (POS) or resource planning systems. Only a $600K seed round to-date.

🦁 Orderlion: Austria’s Orderlion is likewise focused on integration with customer inventory management systems to make ordering smarter, while getting everybody away from orders by “phone, email, fax, and Whatsapp.”

🟢 Foodcircle: Berlin’s digital food procurement platform Foodcircle helps F&B brands negotiate better (longer) payment terms and finances payments for their customers. That’s a strong value proposition that might draw more customers onto the platform (which in turn bring the producers). 

🛒 BlueCart: the closest player to a ‘complete’ platform with value-adds and revenue-streams from everybody involved, BlueCart’s base of 94,000 qualified buyers is a strong incentive to wholesalers and suppliers to pay $200 / month to join the party. $29M in funding to-date, with the last round back in March 2020.

🇪🇸 Katoo: the Madrid-based procurement platform player works with over 3,000 suppliers and raised a $3M seed round 10 months ago. 

Inventory & Ingredient Insights:

With climate change, supply chain pains, and customers expecting a better sustainability footprint, it’s only growing harder for brands to optimize their ingredients and inventory.

There’s a growing category of software and insights platforms helping brands do just that, either through recipe development tech or climate impact certification.

Inventory & Ingredient Insights: Who?

🗺️ Journey Foods: focused on helping food companies easily develop and launch products, Journey Foods helps businesses optimize what ingredients they buy and from whom. It’s all built on an AI model which spots inefficiencies and has so-far delivered over one billion ‘insights’ on that model. Last fundraising activity was a convertible note in March 2021.

🧠 Wenda: offering food supply chain monitoring tools, Italy’s Wenda enables buyers and suppliers to ensure items are shipped, stored, and delivered on-time and safely. It’s the kind of insights platform poised to benefit from the current supply chain chaos, aggregating data and identifying delays and bottlenecks. Wenda last raised €575.000 in January.

Galley Solutions: Galley helps recipe developers design and formulate more profitable dishes with data-driven, fast R&D. They’re focused on foodservice, caterers, restaurants, and ghost kitchens. Strong validation with large foodservice companies. $2.5M raised back in 2019.

🌍 Planet FWD: focused on empowering brands to develop more sustainable products, Planet FWD’s platform assesses and helps improve the carbon footprint of products. $2.5M raised in Dec 2020.

⛲ Fountain9: the YCombinator-21-backed Indian startup senses changes in demand patterns so customers can always be ready to expand production or order more stock (without wasting money on overstocking). $1.9M seed raised in July of this year. 

🧑‍🌾 Mondra: offering a solution for farmers, processors, and retailers, London’s Mondra argues that there’s finally a fast and demonstrable return on sustainable products. They offer sustainability assessments (carbon, biodiversity, water usage & pollution) that brands can then include on labeling. No fundraising reported to-date, but they are assisting a steady stream of brands receive Foundation Earth certification.

🧑‍🌾 CarbonCloud: this subscription-based climate impact assessment tool works with brands like Oatly and Estrella. The Swedish team raised a €1.2M Seed round last fall. 

😋 Eaternity: offering scoring tools for both brands and restaurants, Eaternity’s client list includes restaurant operators and fellow Swiss firm Planted. Funded by Grants (and customers) up till now.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms:

Short supply chains are resilient supply chains. If the Suez canal or a Chinese harbor get blocked up, that’s not going to impact the farm stand down the road. 

There are more and more tech companies rising to help take that farm stand online

These aren’t grocery delivery apps adding a new step between you and the supermarket, but instead new platforms where farmers or producers can list and sell their products directly, keeping the money in their pockets by cutting out a few middlemen.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms: Who?

🥕 Food4All: the local food platform helps farmers and ranchers set up simple e-commerce pages and sell their inventory directly to customers. Food4All is especially focused on Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscriptions, where shoppers subscribe to a little bit of whatever the farm is harvesting that week.

🚪 Barn2Door: with a flat monthly fee, Seattle’s Barn2Door helps farmers open their own online shop and manage their inventory. Barn2Door raised a $6M Series A back in 2020.

♻️ Lyfa: the zero-waste Swiss startup let’s users order a variety of pantry and fresh items in circular packaging they return to Lyfa on the next delivery. The startup closed a pre-seed round this July. 

🧑‍🌾 Farmy: Switzerland’s Farmy has a compelling volume of producers and customers, with over 1,200 regional producers listed and 6,000+ items listed. They’re one of the best-financed in the space with $16M raised to-date. 

🚜 Frischepost: now in 5 cities, Hamburg-based Frischepost offers regional products delivered in reusable packaging. The company closed an undisclosed Series A last November.

🌱 Harvie: Pittsburgh’s Harvie is building distribution networks and helping farms offer CSA boxes and online shops, for a $1,000 setup fee and a 7% transaction fee.

📦 Obergudt: Berlin’s Obergudt is a lean operation which collects produce from farmers and other artisans in the region, with users able to customize or skip orders each week delivered in a reusable container.

🚚 OurHarvest: delivering local products in New York, OurHarvest delivers from a wide range of producers while donating generously to food pantries.

Soothing Supply Chain Strains

It’s not a simple time to grow, sell, make, or buy food.

The pandemic has ‘kicked the tires’ of our food system, and made it clear that what we’ve been doing, isn’t working.

But with more startup activity helping food businesses monitor, buy, and sell food, there’s reason to hope that we can both improve supply chains as they exist today, and introduce new tech-enabled channels to farmers and producers whose products are more sustainable and resilient than the stuff sailing halfway around the globe.

After two editions of supply chain talk - how are you feeling about the future of our supply chain struggles?

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Startups solving supply chain pains

“Permanent” food shortages in the UK. A 32.9% increase in food prices since last year. A global shortage of truckers as high as 20% in Asia (and 100,000 in Britain).

Stuff ain’t moving like it used to. Our supply chains are more complicated and less stable than ever, making shopping & eating less certain, and more expensive. 

The supply chain disruption we covered last week is indeed a global, systemic problem, and solving it will require thousands of changes, from small everyday choices to massive realignments of how companies and governments act.

Changing towards a more secure and resilient food system will also require new companies to solve hard problems. That’s why this week, we’re rounding up a few startups that are working to make things better in food supply chains –– including easier procurement, ingredient optimization, and direct-to-consumer platforms between producer and eater.

(Today's word count: 1,328 words or a 7-minute read)

Procurement Platforms:

These startups help restaurants and manufacturers efficiently order from their suppliers. Restaurant ordering is an old-school game, with restaurants placing orders by phone, fax, or email and then hoping the right stuff comes off the truck. 

But with one major restaurant supplier reporting nearly 50% of their deliveries are now late amid supply chain pains, restaurants are more willing than ever to switch to something new. Of course, restaurants themselves are still hurting, meaning the restaurant procurement segment is struggling to monetize and has been dealt out of the booming investment game.

Most procurement startups are platforms which require participation from both restaurants and suppliers. Platform players only offer value with a critical mass of users, meaning these companies typically start in a specific region before expanding, and desperately need to build some momentum to get off the ground.

But platforms are challenging, requiring behavior changes from everybody involved. Once users are there, they’re sticky –– that’s why craigslist can get by looking like the hottest html 1995 had to offer.

Procurement Platforms: Who?

🍫 Choco: Berlin’s red-hot restaurant ordering platform grew 4x in the last year with nearly $1B in platform transactions, raising a $100M Series B in late July. Like many players in the space, they emphasize that efficient ordering saves $ and reduces waste. The service is free for restaurants and suppliers, with a premium option available to suppliers.  

🍳 ChefsList: another Berlin entrant, ChefsList has strong retail and restaurant partners without publicly-reported fundraising. 

🗒️ SupplyNote: the Indian startup focuses on a cloud-based solution integrated with their point-of-sales (POS) or resource planning systems. Only a $600K seed round to-date.

🦁 Orderlion: Austria’s Orderlion is likewise focused on integration with customer inventory management systems to make ordering smarter, while getting everybody away from orders by “phone, email, fax, and Whatsapp.”

🟢 Foodcircle: Berlin’s digital food procurement platform Foodcircle helps F&B brands negotiate better (longer) payment terms and finances payments for their customers. That’s a strong value proposition that might draw more customers onto the platform (which in turn bring the producers). 

🛒 BlueCart: the closest player to a ‘complete’ platform with value-adds and revenue-streams from everybody involved, BlueCart’s base of 94,000 qualified buyers is a strong incentive to wholesalers and suppliers to pay $200 / month to join the party. $29M in funding to-date, with the last round back in March 2020.

🇪🇸 Katoo: the Madrid-based procurement platform player works with over 3,000 suppliers and raised a $3M seed round 10 months ago. 

Inventory & Ingredient Insights:

With climate change, supply chain pains, and customers expecting a better sustainability footprint, it’s only growing harder for brands to optimize their ingredients and inventory.

There’s a growing category of software and insights platforms helping brands do just that, either through recipe development tech or climate impact certification.

Inventory & Ingredient Insights: Who?

🗺️ Journey Foods: focused on helping food companies easily develop and launch products, Journey Foods helps businesses optimize what ingredients they buy and from whom. It’s all built on an AI model which spots inefficiencies and has so-far delivered over one billion ‘insights’ on that model. Last fundraising activity was a convertible note in March 2021.

🧠 Wenda: offering food supply chain monitoring tools, Italy’s Wenda enables buyers and suppliers to ensure items are shipped, stored, and delivered on-time and safely. It’s the kind of insights platform poised to benefit from the current supply chain chaos, aggregating data and identifying delays and bottlenecks. Wenda last raised €575.000 in January.

Galley Solutions: Galley helps recipe developers design and formulate more profitable dishes with data-driven, fast R&D. They’re focused on foodservice, caterers, restaurants, and ghost kitchens. Strong validation with large foodservice companies. $2.5M raised back in 2019.

🌍 Planet FWD: focused on empowering brands to develop more sustainable products, Planet FWD’s platform assesses and helps improve the carbon footprint of products. $2.5M raised in Dec 2020.

⛲ Fountain9: the YCombinator-21-backed Indian startup senses changes in demand patterns so customers can always be ready to expand production or order more stock (without wasting money on overstocking). $1.9M seed raised in July of this year. 

🧑‍🌾 Mondra: offering a solution for farmers, processors, and retailers, London’s Mondra argues that there’s finally a fast and demonstrable return on sustainable products. They offer sustainability assessments (carbon, biodiversity, water usage & pollution) that brands can then include on labeling. No fundraising reported to-date, but they are assisting a steady stream of brands receive Foundation Earth certification.

🧑‍🌾 CarbonCloud: this subscription-based climate impact assessment tool works with brands like Oatly and Estrella. The Swedish team raised a €1.2M Seed round last fall. 

😋 Eaternity: offering scoring tools for both brands and restaurants, Eaternity’s client list includes restaurant operators and fellow Swiss firm Planted. Funded by Grants (and customers) up till now.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms:

Short supply chains are resilient supply chains. If the Suez canal or a Chinese harbor get blocked up, that’s not going to impact the farm stand down the road. 

There are more and more tech companies rising to help take that farm stand online

These aren’t grocery delivery apps adding a new step between you and the supermarket, but instead new platforms where farmers or producers can list and sell their products directly, keeping the money in their pockets by cutting out a few middlemen.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms: Who?

🥕 Food4All: the local food platform helps farmers and ranchers set up simple e-commerce pages and sell their inventory directly to customers. Food4All is especially focused on Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscriptions, where shoppers subscribe to a little bit of whatever the farm is harvesting that week.

🚪 Barn2Door: with a flat monthly fee, Seattle’s Barn2Door helps farmers open their own online shop and manage their inventory. Barn2Door raised a $6M Series A back in 2020.

♻️ Lyfa: the zero-waste Swiss startup let’s users order a variety of pantry and fresh items in circular packaging they return to Lyfa on the next delivery. The startup closed a pre-seed round this July. 

🧑‍🌾 Farmy: Switzerland’s Farmy has a compelling volume of producers and customers, with over 1,200 regional producers listed and 6,000+ items listed. They’re one of the best-financed in the space with $16M raised to-date. 

🚜 Frischepost: now in 5 cities, Hamburg-based Frischepost offers regional products delivered in reusable packaging. The company closed an undisclosed Series A last November.

🌱 Harvie: Pittsburgh’s Harvie is building distribution networks and helping farms offer CSA boxes and online shops, for a $1,000 setup fee and a 7% transaction fee.

📦 Obergudt: Berlin’s Obergudt is a lean operation which collects produce from farmers and other artisans in the region, with users able to customize or skip orders each week delivered in a reusable container.

🚚 OurHarvest: delivering local products in New York, OurHarvest delivers from a wide range of producers while donating generously to food pantries.

Soothing Supply Chain Strains

It’s not a simple time to grow, sell, make, or buy food.

The pandemic has ‘kicked the tires’ of our food system, and made it clear that what we’ve been doing, isn’t working.

But with more startup activity helping food businesses monitor, buy, and sell food, there’s reason to hope that we can both improve supply chains as they exist today, and introduce new tech-enabled channels to farmers and producers whose products are more sustainable and resilient than the stuff sailing halfway around the globe.

After two editions of supply chain talk - how are you feeling about the future of our supply chain struggles?

Startups solving supply chain pains

“Permanent” food shortages in the UK. A 32.9% increase in food prices since last year. A global shortage of truckers as high as 20% in Asia (and 100,000 in Britain).

Stuff ain’t moving like it used to. Our supply chains are more complicated and less stable than ever, making shopping & eating less certain, and more expensive. 

The supply chain disruption we covered last week is indeed a global, systemic problem, and solving it will require thousands of changes, from small everyday choices to massive realignments of how companies and governments act.

Changing towards a more secure and resilient food system will also require new companies to solve hard problems. That’s why this week, we’re rounding up a few startups that are working to make things better in food supply chains –– including easier procurement, ingredient optimization, and direct-to-consumer platforms between producer and eater.

(Today's word count: 1,328 words or a 7-minute read)

Procurement Platforms:

These startups help restaurants and manufacturers efficiently order from their suppliers. Restaurant ordering is an old-school game, with restaurants placing orders by phone, fax, or email and then hoping the right stuff comes off the truck. 

But with one major restaurant supplier reporting nearly 50% of their deliveries are now late amid supply chain pains, restaurants are more willing than ever to switch to something new. Of course, restaurants themselves are still hurting, meaning the restaurant procurement segment is struggling to monetize and has been dealt out of the booming investment game.

Most procurement startups are platforms which require participation from both restaurants and suppliers. Platform players only offer value with a critical mass of users, meaning these companies typically start in a specific region before expanding, and desperately need to build some momentum to get off the ground.

But platforms are challenging, requiring behavior changes from everybody involved. Once users are there, they’re sticky –– that’s why craigslist can get by looking like the hottest html 1995 had to offer.

Procurement Platforms: Who?

🍫 Choco: Berlin’s red-hot restaurant ordering platform grew 4x in the last year with nearly $1B in platform transactions, raising a $100M Series B in late July. Like many players in the space, they emphasize that efficient ordering saves $ and reduces waste. The service is free for restaurants and suppliers, with a premium option available to suppliers.  

🍳 ChefsList: another Berlin entrant, ChefsList has strong retail and restaurant partners without publicly-reported fundraising. 

🗒️ SupplyNote: the Indian startup focuses on a cloud-based solution integrated with their point-of-sales (POS) or resource planning systems. Only a $600K seed round to-date.

🦁 Orderlion: Austria’s Orderlion is likewise focused on integration with customer inventory management systems to make ordering smarter, while getting everybody away from orders by “phone, email, fax, and Whatsapp.”

🟢 Foodcircle: Berlin’s digital food procurement platform Foodcircle helps F&B brands negotiate better (longer) payment terms and finances payments for their customers. That’s a strong value proposition that might draw more customers onto the platform (which in turn bring the producers). 

🛒 BlueCart: the closest player to a ‘complete’ platform with value-adds and revenue-streams from everybody involved, BlueCart’s base of 94,000 qualified buyers is a strong incentive to wholesalers and suppliers to pay $200 / month to join the party. $29M in funding to-date, with the last round back in March 2020.

🇪🇸 Katoo: the Madrid-based procurement platform player works with over 3,000 suppliers and raised a $3M seed round 10 months ago. 

Inventory & Ingredient Insights:

With climate change, supply chain pains, and customers expecting a better sustainability footprint, it’s only growing harder for brands to optimize their ingredients and inventory.

There’s a growing category of software and insights platforms helping brands do just that, either through recipe development tech or climate impact certification.

Inventory & Ingredient Insights: Who?

🗺️ Journey Foods: focused on helping food companies easily develop and launch products, Journey Foods helps businesses optimize what ingredients they buy and from whom. It’s all built on an AI model which spots inefficiencies and has so-far delivered over one billion ‘insights’ on that model. Last fundraising activity was a convertible note in March 2021.

🧠 Wenda: offering food supply chain monitoring tools, Italy’s Wenda enables buyers and suppliers to ensure items are shipped, stored, and delivered on-time and safely. It’s the kind of insights platform poised to benefit from the current supply chain chaos, aggregating data and identifying delays and bottlenecks. Wenda last raised €575.000 in January.

Galley Solutions: Galley helps recipe developers design and formulate more profitable dishes with data-driven, fast R&D. They’re focused on foodservice, caterers, restaurants, and ghost kitchens. Strong validation with large foodservice companies. $2.5M raised back in 2019.

🌍 Planet FWD: focused on empowering brands to develop more sustainable products, Planet FWD’s platform assesses and helps improve the carbon footprint of products. $2.5M raised in Dec 2020.

⛲ Fountain9: the YCombinator-21-backed Indian startup senses changes in demand patterns so customers can always be ready to expand production or order more stock (without wasting money on overstocking). $1.9M seed raised in July of this year. 

🧑‍🌾 Mondra: offering a solution for farmers, processors, and retailers, London’s Mondra argues that there’s finally a fast and demonstrable return on sustainable products. They offer sustainability assessments (carbon, biodiversity, water usage & pollution) that brands can then include on labeling. No fundraising reported to-date, but they are assisting a steady stream of brands receive Foundation Earth certification.

🧑‍🌾 CarbonCloud: this subscription-based climate impact assessment tool works with brands like Oatly and Estrella. The Swedish team raised a €1.2M Seed round last fall. 

😋 Eaternity: offering scoring tools for both brands and restaurants, Eaternity’s client list includes restaurant operators and fellow Swiss firm Planted. Funded by Grants (and customers) up till now.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms:

Short supply chains are resilient supply chains. If the Suez canal or a Chinese harbor get blocked up, that’s not going to impact the farm stand down the road. 

There are more and more tech companies rising to help take that farm stand online

These aren’t grocery delivery apps adding a new step between you and the supermarket, but instead new platforms where farmers or producers can list and sell their products directly, keeping the money in their pockets by cutting out a few middlemen.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms: Who?

🥕 Food4All: the local food platform helps farmers and ranchers set up simple e-commerce pages and sell their inventory directly to customers. Food4All is especially focused on Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscriptions, where shoppers subscribe to a little bit of whatever the farm is harvesting that week.

🚪 Barn2Door: with a flat monthly fee, Seattle’s Barn2Door helps farmers open their own online shop and manage their inventory. Barn2Door raised a $6M Series A back in 2020.

♻️ Lyfa: the zero-waste Swiss startup let’s users order a variety of pantry and fresh items in circular packaging they return to Lyfa on the next delivery. The startup closed a pre-seed round this July. 

🧑‍🌾 Farmy: Switzerland’s Farmy has a compelling volume of producers and customers, with over 1,200 regional producers listed and 6,000+ items listed. They’re one of the best-financed in the space with $16M raised to-date. 

🚜 Frischepost: now in 5 cities, Hamburg-based Frischepost offers regional products delivered in reusable packaging. The company closed an undisclosed Series A last November.

🌱 Harvie: Pittsburgh’s Harvie is building distribution networks and helping farms offer CSA boxes and online shops, for a $1,000 setup fee and a 7% transaction fee.

📦 Obergudt: Berlin’s Obergudt is a lean operation which collects produce from farmers and other artisans in the region, with users able to customize or skip orders each week delivered in a reusable container.

🚚 OurHarvest: delivering local products in New York, OurHarvest delivers from a wide range of producers while donating generously to food pantries.

Soothing Supply Chain Strains

It’s not a simple time to grow, sell, make, or buy food.

The pandemic has ‘kicked the tires’ of our food system, and made it clear that what we’ve been doing, isn’t working.

But with more startup activity helping food businesses monitor, buy, and sell food, there’s reason to hope that we can both improve supply chains as they exist today, and introduce new tech-enabled channels to farmers and producers whose products are more sustainable and resilient than the stuff sailing halfway around the globe.

After two editions of supply chain talk - how are you feeling about the future of our supply chain struggles?

Startups solving supply chain pains

“Permanent” food shortages in the UK. A 32.9% increase in food prices since last year. A global shortage of truckers as high as 20% in Asia (and 100,000 in Britain).

Stuff ain’t moving like it used to. Our supply chains are more complicated and less stable than ever, making shopping & eating less certain, and more expensive. 

The supply chain disruption we covered last week is indeed a global, systemic problem, and solving it will require thousands of changes, from small everyday choices to massive realignments of how companies and governments act.

Changing towards a more secure and resilient food system will also require new companies to solve hard problems. That’s why this week, we’re rounding up a few startups that are working to make things better in food supply chains –– including easier procurement, ingredient optimization, and direct-to-consumer platforms between producer and eater.

(Today's word count: 1,328 words or a 7-minute read)

Procurement Platforms:

These startups help restaurants and manufacturers efficiently order from their suppliers. Restaurant ordering is an old-school game, with restaurants placing orders by phone, fax, or email and then hoping the right stuff comes off the truck. 

But with one major restaurant supplier reporting nearly 50% of their deliveries are now late amid supply chain pains, restaurants are more willing than ever to switch to something new. Of course, restaurants themselves are still hurting, meaning the restaurant procurement segment is struggling to monetize and has been dealt out of the booming investment game.

Most procurement startups are platforms which require participation from both restaurants and suppliers. Platform players only offer value with a critical mass of users, meaning these companies typically start in a specific region before expanding, and desperately need to build some momentum to get off the ground.

But platforms are challenging, requiring behavior changes from everybody involved. Once users are there, they’re sticky –– that’s why craigslist can get by looking like the hottest html 1995 had to offer.

Procurement Platforms: Who?

🍫 Choco: Berlin’s red-hot restaurant ordering platform grew 4x in the last year with nearly $1B in platform transactions, raising a $100M Series B in late July. Like many players in the space, they emphasize that efficient ordering saves $ and reduces waste. The service is free for restaurants and suppliers, with a premium option available to suppliers.  

🍳 ChefsList: another Berlin entrant, ChefsList has strong retail and restaurant partners without publicly-reported fundraising. 

🗒️ SupplyNote: the Indian startup focuses on a cloud-based solution integrated with their point-of-sales (POS) or resource planning systems. Only a $600K seed round to-date.

🦁 Orderlion: Austria’s Orderlion is likewise focused on integration with customer inventory management systems to make ordering smarter, while getting everybody away from orders by “phone, email, fax, and Whatsapp.”

🟢 Foodcircle: Berlin’s digital food procurement platform Foodcircle helps F&B brands negotiate better (longer) payment terms and finances payments for their customers. That’s a strong value proposition that might draw more customers onto the platform (which in turn bring the producers). 

🛒 BlueCart: the closest player to a ‘complete’ platform with value-adds and revenue-streams from everybody involved, BlueCart’s base of 94,000 qualified buyers is a strong incentive to wholesalers and suppliers to pay $200 / month to join the party. $29M in funding to-date, with the last round back in March 2020.

🇪🇸 Katoo: the Madrid-based procurement platform player works with over 3,000 suppliers and raised a $3M seed round 10 months ago. 

Inventory & Ingredient Insights:

With climate change, supply chain pains, and customers expecting a better sustainability footprint, it’s only growing harder for brands to optimize their ingredients and inventory.

There’s a growing category of software and insights platforms helping brands do just that, either through recipe development tech or climate impact certification.

Inventory & Ingredient Insights: Who?

🗺️ Journey Foods: focused on helping food companies easily develop and launch products, Journey Foods helps businesses optimize what ingredients they buy and from whom. It’s all built on an AI model which spots inefficiencies and has so-far delivered over one billion ‘insights’ on that model. Last fundraising activity was a convertible note in March 2021.

🧠 Wenda: offering food supply chain monitoring tools, Italy’s Wenda enables buyers and suppliers to ensure items are shipped, stored, and delivered on-time and safely. It’s the kind of insights platform poised to benefit from the current supply chain chaos, aggregating data and identifying delays and bottlenecks. Wenda last raised €575.000 in January.

Galley Solutions: Galley helps recipe developers design and formulate more profitable dishes with data-driven, fast R&D. They’re focused on foodservice, caterers, restaurants, and ghost kitchens. Strong validation with large foodservice companies. $2.5M raised back in 2019.

🌍 Planet FWD: focused on empowering brands to develop more sustainable products, Planet FWD’s platform assesses and helps improve the carbon footprint of products. $2.5M raised in Dec 2020.

⛲ Fountain9: the YCombinator-21-backed Indian startup senses changes in demand patterns so customers can always be ready to expand production or order more stock (without wasting money on overstocking). $1.9M seed raised in July of this year. 

🧑‍🌾 Mondra: offering a solution for farmers, processors, and retailers, London’s Mondra argues that there’s finally a fast and demonstrable return on sustainable products. They offer sustainability assessments (carbon, biodiversity, water usage & pollution) that brands can then include on labeling. No fundraising reported to-date, but they are assisting a steady stream of brands receive Foundation Earth certification.

🧑‍🌾 CarbonCloud: this subscription-based climate impact assessment tool works with brands like Oatly and Estrella. The Swedish team raised a €1.2M Seed round last fall. 

😋 Eaternity: offering scoring tools for both brands and restaurants, Eaternity’s client list includes restaurant operators and fellow Swiss firm Planted. Funded by Grants (and customers) up till now.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms:

Short supply chains are resilient supply chains. If the Suez canal or a Chinese harbor get blocked up, that’s not going to impact the farm stand down the road. 

There are more and more tech companies rising to help take that farm stand online

These aren’t grocery delivery apps adding a new step between you and the supermarket, but instead new platforms where farmers or producers can list and sell their products directly, keeping the money in their pockets by cutting out a few middlemen.

Direct-to-Consumer Platforms: Who?

🥕 Food4All: the local food platform helps farmers and ranchers set up simple e-commerce pages and sell their inventory directly to customers. Food4All is especially focused on Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscriptions, where shoppers subscribe to a little bit of whatever the farm is harvesting that week.

🚪 Barn2Door: with a flat monthly fee, Seattle’s Barn2Door helps farmers open their own online shop and manage their inventory. Barn2Door raised a $6M Series A back in 2020.

♻️ Lyfa: the zero-waste Swiss startup let’s users order a variety of pantry and fresh items in circular packaging they return to Lyfa on the next delivery. The startup closed a pre-seed round this July. 

🧑‍🌾 Farmy: Switzerland’s Farmy has a compelling volume of producers and customers, with over 1,200 regional producers listed and 6,000+ items listed. They’re one of the best-financed in the space with $16M raised to-date. 

🚜 Frischepost: now in 5 cities, Hamburg-based Frischepost offers regional products delivered in reusable packaging. The company closed an undisclosed Series A last November.

🌱 Harvie: Pittsburgh’s Harvie is building distribution networks and helping farms offer CSA boxes and online shops, for a $1,000 setup fee and a 7% transaction fee.

📦 Obergudt: Berlin’s Obergudt is a lean operation which collects produce from farmers and other artisans in the region, with users able to customize or skip orders each week delivered in a reusable container.

🚚 OurHarvest: delivering local products in New York, OurHarvest delivers from a wide range of producers while donating generously to food pantries.

Soothing Supply Chain Strains

It’s not a simple time to grow, sell, make, or buy food.

The pandemic has ‘kicked the tires’ of our food system, and made it clear that what we’ve been doing, isn’t working.

But with more startup activity helping food businesses monitor, buy, and sell food, there’s reason to hope that we can both improve supply chains as they exist today, and introduce new tech-enabled channels to farmers and producers whose products are more sustainable and resilient than the stuff sailing halfway around the globe.

After two editions of supply chain talk - how are you feeling about the future of our supply chain struggles?

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