Online Food Bank, Upcycled Cacao Fruit Bars, and $10M for Gluten-Free Snack Brand

If you feel like you’ve fallen behind in the fast-paced world of food tech, you’ve come to the right place. In this week’s Food Tech News roundup, we have stories on Feeding America’s new online platform, Costco’s partnership with Uber, a snack brand’s $10 million funding round, and one of the first companies to receive the Upcycled Food Certification.

Food bank launches online grocery ordering for those facing food insecurity

Feeding America is one of the largest food banks in the country, and this week the non-profit began offering online ordering. Called Order Ahead, food is ordered through a Feeding America network food bank or partner food on a smartphone, tablet, or computer. The order can then be picked up at schools, libraries, or a drive-thru distribution center. Certain markets will also be offering home delivery. Those requiring food assistance unfortunately might feel embarrassed or stigmatized, so offering an online platform allows for the option of being more discreet.

CaPao is one of the first companies to receive the Upcycled Food Certification

CaPao has created a snack product that is made from upcycled cacao fruit. The brand was developed in Mondelēz International’s SnackFuture innovation and venture hub, and this week announced that it is one of the first companies to receive the recently launch Upcycled Food Certification. After cacao beans have been extracted from the cacao pod, there is about 70 percent of the pod remaining goes to waste, and this remaining fruit is used in the snack product. CaPao sources this potential food waste from Cabosse Naturals, a food and beverage company that uses cacao pods to make various ingredients. Using the upcycled cacao fruit, CaPao produces three flavors of snack bars and balls: mango cashew coconut, golden berry apricot chia, and cherry almond cocoa. The products are available for purchase on the company’s website and retailers in Southern California.

Photo by Henry & Co. on Unsplash

Costco partners with Uber to trial same-day delivery

Costco is currently trialing same-day grocery delivery with Uber at 25 Texas locations in Dallas, Houston, and Austin. Uber has announced that its drivers will be able to deliver groceries in minutes to a few hours. To use the service trial in Texas, customers must order at least $35 worth of Costco groceries and products. Costo currently also works with Instacart to offer same-day delivery.

Gluten-free snack maker raises $10 million

Quinn produces various gluten-free snacks, and this week the company secured $10 million in its Series B funding round. NewRoad Capital Partners led the round, and Echo Capital, Boulder Food Group, and Sunil Thakor also participated. The capital will be used for product innovation, company growth, and be put towards Quinn’s mission of supporting regenerative agriculture. Quinn uses gluten-free ingredients like sorghum, cassava, and corn for its pretzels sticks and chips, stuffed pretzels, and flavored popcorn. The company provides a map of where its ingredients are sourced and a list of farmers (who are taking steps to reduce their environmental impact) it buys from to provide transparency to consumers. Quinn’s products are available for purchase in approximately 10,000 retailers nationwide.

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