SAN FRANCISCO-- Full Harvest, the produce business-to-business marketplace specializing in surplus and imperfect produce, today announced the close of a $23 million Series B round of growth financing led by agtech investor TELUS Ventures, the strategic investment arm of TELUS corporation. New investors Rethink Impact, Citi Impact, Doon Capital, Stardust Equity and Portfolia Food & AgTech Fund as well as existing investors Spark Capital, Cultivian Sandbox, Astia Fund, Radicle Growth and others also joined the round. Helping solve the $2.6T global food waste problem (the leading contributor to climate change), Full Harvest plans to use the funding to further build out its online marketplace, advance its data and market insights offerings, and triple its technology and product team in 2022.
Working with some of the largest food and beverage companies (Danone North America, Health-Ade), processors (SVZ) and growers (Tanimura & Antle, Church Brothers, Deardorff Farms), Full Harvest reduces produce sourcing headaches and food waste by moving the produce supply chain online – allowing buyers to purchase more sustainable produce, lowering food production costs, and creating an additional revenue stream for farmers. Tripling revenue during the first year of the pandemic due to the industry's desperate need for more flexible, transparent supply chain solutions, Full Harvest recently hit a sales milestone of more than 50 million pounds of surplus and imperfect produce sold – saving over 1B gallons of water from being wasted and over 6M kg of CO2 emissions from being created.
"The importance of building more sustainable businesses has never been more evident, especially for those in the food and beverage space. By sourcing produce online through Full Harvest and selecting fruit for our products that would otherwise have gone to waste, we are answering the growing consumer demand for more sustainable food options," noted Surbhi Martin, Vice President Greek Yogurt and Functional Nutrition, Danone North America.
Although we currently grow enough food to feed 9-10 billion people, more than 40 percent of it goes to waste globally each year. As more than half of global food waste happens before it even leaves the farm, Full Harvest aims to help solve the farm distribution problem. Full Harvest offers an easy, online option for produce buyers and sellers to quickly close deals on surplus and imperfect produce in just a few clicks – getting more produce options to buyers faster, helping farms sell more of their crop and reducing waste.
"We are committed to leveraging the power of technology to build a safer, more efficient, and sustainable food chain; and our investment in Full Harvest aligns with that mission," said Mario Mele, vice president Corporate Strategy, TELUS Ventures. "With its strong leadership and mission-driven approach, combined with our growing expertise in the AgTech space, Full Harvest is well-positioned to evolve the produce market and drastically reduce food waste by leveraging data and technology to digitize what is still a very analog market. We look forward to helping the team scale the company and transform the industry to the benefit of farmers, buyers, and the environment."
Full Harvest will use the investment to accelerate its push to deliver the advanced technology solutions the produce industry needs by expanding its online marketplace, further improving the user experience for both produce sellers and buyers, and substantially growing its network of national buyers and sellers. Full Harvest will also focus on expanding its industry-leading data analytics offering to answer the growing demand for insights on produce availability, pricing, specifications, sustainable offerings, quality, forecasting support, etc.
Building on its success with Danone and its Two Good 'Good Save' yogurt, Full Harvest will also use the funding to scale out the global use of its Verified Rescued Produce™, setting the highest standard for on-farm food waste reduction verification. Through the industry's only third-party audit and verification process for rescued produce, Full Harvest provides CPG companies the expertise, network and technology needed to create new products and ensure a scalable, sustainable produce supply chain with integrity.
"Dedicated to empowering 'full harvests' with zero food waste to support a more sustainable ag ecosystem, we are transforming a fragmented and opaque offline produce supply chain into a flexible, transparent, reliable solution by directly connecting growers with processors and food and beverage brands online," said Christine Moseley, founder and CEO of Full Harvest. "With the influx of capital, we plan to build on our incredible customer successes and expand into new markets to make the global produce supply chain more efficient and sustainable."
Jay Crone, investment director at TELUS, joined the Board and will work closely with the Full Harvest executive team to expand and optimize its marketplace and network. Full Harvest will tap TELUS Agriculture's deep understanding of the ag industry and comprehensive network of produce farms, CPG companies and strategic agtech partners to help speed its expansion.
About Full Harvest
Full Harvest is solving the $2.6 trillion food waste problem through technology and innovation. The company runs the only business-to-business online marketplace connecting farmers with commercial produce buyers where they can purchase imperfect and surplus produce. This mission helps reduce climate change by lowering CO2 emissions and water use and delivers incremental revenue to farmers. Additionally, the company partners with brands on their efforts to create new sustainable CPG products and supply chains to meet consumer demand for sustainable products. A win-win-win for farmers, food companies, and the planet. Full Harvest is recognized as a World Economic Forum Tech Pioneer, the top 2020 Fast Company World Changing Idea, and Forbes Most Innovative Agtech Startup. Learn more at www.fullharvest.com.
About TELUS Ventures
As the strategic investment arm of TELUS Corporation (TSX: T) (NYSE: TU), TELUS Ventures is one of Canada's most active corporate venture capital funds. TELUS Ventures invests globally in companies from Seed to Pre-IPO with a focus on innovative technologies such as AgTech, HealthTech, Connected Consumer, IoT, AI, and Security to actively drive new solutions across the TELUS ecosystem. Led by a team of experienced operators, investors and executives, the Ventures team is passionate about creating positive social impact through financial tools and has invested in more than 90 companies since inception. For more information please visit: ventures.telus.com.