In a recent article, Vishal Vasishth, cofounder of Obvious Ventures, captured the future of food in a few simple sentences: "[For] the last 50 years, industrialized food systems focused on producing at lowest cost, and that's been accomplished. The next 50 will be focused on producing the best food."
Driven in part by millennials' demand for transparency and sustainability (and their openness towards new ways of getting dinner on the table), innovation in the food sector - from farming to manufacturing to distribution - is one of the most exciting and rapidly innovating spaces for building new businesses today. From un-tethering chefs from restaurant kitchens, to reimagining refrigerator staples with smarter, more sustainable ingredients, here are three companies to watch.
Which came first, the restaurant or the chef? Homemade's vote lands in the latter camp, and is changing the way these food professionals make a living by allowing them to sell and market their food from wherever they are, instead of just inside an official dining destination. Chefs on Homemade can build their brands and clientele with direct connections to hungry food lovers, then cook for them from anywhere, while Homemade's technology handles logistical headaches like logistics, payments and more.
A new dairy disruptor called Ripple recently debuted an line of innovative milk made from pea protein, single-handedly replacing dairy with a delicious alternative that uses 93% less water to produce than cow's milk, and 85% less water than almond milk. Based in California, where water consumption has been on everyone's mind, Ripple is poised to make big waves in the dairy aisle by offering a milk alternative that's not just safe for people with dairy, soy or nut allergies, but also easy on the environment.
After shaking up the condiment world with its popular line of chef-approved ketchup, Sir Kensington's approached its silkier sibling with an eye no less focused on reinvention. Using leftover chickpea juice from a neighboring hummus company (a liquid called aquafaba), Sir Kensington's created a line of allergen-free, plant-based mayonnaise that gives other vegan mayos - not to mention the classic egg-based stuff - a true run for its money.