chopping produce at restaurant Thinkstock/Thomas Northcut

[email protected]: Walter Robb backs food waste startup | Independent grocers court millennials

Each day at 5 p.m. we collect the five top food and supplement headlines of the day, making it easy for you to catch up on today's most important natural products industry news.

Former Whole Foods co-CEO joins board of Colorado Springs startup, provides ‘sizeable’ investment

FoodMaven, a startup that “rescues” surplus or imperfect food from grocers and distributes it to foodservice businesses that will use it immediately, has a new supporter with some clout. Former Whole Foods co-CEO Walter Robb has joined the Colorado company’s board of directors and made a “sizeable” investment, founder Patrick Bultema told The Gazette. FoodMaven operates in Denver and Colorado Springs but hopes to scale its model to 100 cities in the next five years. In August, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment gave it a $383,000 grant. Read more at The Gazette…

 

Small groceries thrive by providing ready meals to youth

Quick, ready-to-eat food at a reasonable price is one reason why millennials are looking to independent grocers—and that’s providing those smaller stores with a way to compete against Kroger and other superstore chains selling local, organic products. At Woodlake Market in Wisconsin, the average transaction is only about $25, but customers often come back more than once a week to get things they need without having to go into, navigate and wait in line at a supermarket. For Mason Brothers’ Red Owl store in Green Bay, owners Justin and Jared Mason are building an online following of their target audience by posting quirky videos showing off what’s on sale that week. Read more at US News & World Report…

 

Organic avocado category keeps growing

More avocado acreage is being farmed organically, and most retailers—even those outside of the natural channel—are stocking organic versions, growers say. As with conventional avocados, demand is outpacing supply, even with premiums of 10 to 25 percent. Read more at The Packer…

 

Innophos pays $28 million for nutraceutical ingredient firm

In a move that the company says builds on its recent acquisition of Novel Ingredients, specialty ingredient maker Innophos has bought NutraGenesis, maker of branded supplement, food and beverage ingredients across many categories. Read more at NJ Biz…

 

Rep. Tim Ryan co-sponsors bill to reduce America’s food deserts

The Healthy Food Access for All Americans Act is a bipartisan effort to set up tax credits and grants for businesses that provide healthy food options to low-income and rural areas. Read more at WOSU Public Media…

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