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5@5: What's up in food and ag investing | 2 former Whole Foods employees on the Amazon deal5@5: What's up in food and ag investing | 2 former Whole Foods employees on the Amazon deal

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.

October 11, 2017

2 Min Read
5@5: What's up in food and ag investing | 2 former Whole Foods employees on the Amazon deal

Innovative food: Startups raise $206M to meet consumer demand for protein & novel ingredients

Disruptive food startups raised 60 percent more in the first half of 2017 than they did in the first half of 2016, according to AgFunder. Categories of interest include novel supplements and nutraceuticals (think Before Brands and Omni Active Health Technologies); sugar replacement technology (Miraculex and Myco Technology) and cultured meat and fish. Read more at AgFunder News…


Maine Voices: Amazon-Whole Foods deal helps to make the case for co-ops

A former marketer for Whole Foods, now the community engagement coordinator at Portland Food Co-op, says a cooperative business model could have stopped the chain’s Amazon buyout. She notes that the acquisition—and the moves Whole Foods makes as a result—could make things harder for local producers and employees. In a co-op model, “serving the needs of the community is written into the DNA of a co-op.” Read more at Portland Press Herald…


Amazon, this isn’t how you support a food system

Another former Whole Foods employee, now VP of grocery for organic meal kit deliverer Good Eggs, also believes the acquisition will hurt local food systems. Getting into large retail chains is tough for small brands, but because of opportunities for brands to pitch to regional buyers and build relationships with customers by sampling in store, many have been able to get their products on the shelves at Whole Foods. But if the retailer centralizes its buying and stops allowing brand representatives to sample in store, like it’s rumored to be doing, it’s shutting the door on many small, local brands that are the lifeblood of the industry, she says. Read more at Good Eggs…


Vitamin Shoppe closing NJ warehouse, 139 could lose jobs

The supplements chain gave 139 employees layoff warnings as it prepares to close a warehouse and distribution center in North Bergen by the end of 2018. Read more at NJ.com…


Johns Hopkins FoodSpan curriculum brings lessons to schools across the country

Coursework developed by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future is helping teachers across the country use food to teach health, social justice and more by detailing each piece of the food system. Read more at The Washington Post…

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