Seed 2 Growth Ventures has closed a $125 million fund, focused on healthy, sustainable food. The fund hopes to capitalise on what it sees as a major market opening up for affordable, high-quality foods, in what were previously seen as speciality markets, like organic and non-genetically modified foods.
“We’re seeing tectonic shifts in the food industry that consumers are driving. People want better tasting, more nutritious, healthy and sustainable food. The problem is our existing food system is designed to produce cheap calories, and it is not designed to supply healthy, sustainable and affordable nutrition at scale,” S2G co-founder, Victor Friedberg said in a statement. “This provides a great opportunity for innovators and investors, and S2G is seizing the opportunity.”
The fund’s leadership includes Open Table chief executive, Chuck Templeton, and Sanjeev Krishnan, co-founder of the life sciences practice of the International Finance Corporation. An S2G spokeswoman told Agri Investor the fund will bring capital and industry knowledge to innovators with the potential to reshape the US market for healthy, sustainable food.
“Our investments span the entire range of the system, from production, access to demand,” Friedberg said at the New York Times’ Food for Tomorrow conference.
S2G already has eight portfolio companies involved with production, processing, data services and consulting for stakeholders ranging from farmers to consumers. The fund’s “soil to shelf” strategy focuses on making investments in companies at varied stages of development, operating at different points throughout the value chain, according to the spokesperson.
“S2G is specifically looking for companies that can take on a leadership role in the agriculture sector,” said the spokesperson.
According to a company press release, the fund looks to invest in companies that bring to market nutritious and functional ingredients, food logistics, healthy retail and restaurant formats and tech innovations that improve access to healthy, sustainable and local food.
The fund’s current portfolio includes Mercaris, ShopWell, Maple Hill Creamery, Beyond Meat, Sweetgreen, Midwestern BioAg and herb-growers Shenandoah Growers.