Ag Industry Brief: Hampton Creek Lays Off Staff Struggling to Fundraise, Impossible Foods Boosts Management, more

May 8, 2017

Hampton Creek CEO Cleans House Amid Fundraising Woes

Hampton Creek, which created a vegan egg-less mayo spread, has only raised $7 million toward its recently established goal of capturing $150 million in new capital. So, CEO Josh Tetrick is rumored to be making big changes to the company’s management. Bloomberg reports that he’s already fired several deputies, the chief financial officer, chief operations officer, and human resources chief. Read more here.

Impossible Foods Boosts Management Team

David Lipman, the director of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, will join Impossible Foods’ management team. He has a storied past in the cattle industry. Read more here.

INOVISA’s cropUP Challenge Begins Second Cycle

Headquartered in Lisbon, INOVISA has launched round two of its cropUP challenge, a remotely-run accelerator for the agrifood and forestry sectors. INOVISA was created in 2005 at the University of Lisbon’s School of Agriculture and is dedicated to fostering innovation in agriculture, food, and forestry. Applications close May 15.

FoodIT: Fork to Farm 2017 Blender Pitch Competition

As part The Mixing Bowl’s June 27, 2017, FOOD IT conference, The Blender Pitch Competition will give food and agtech companies a chance to present a five-minute pitch followed by a two-minute Q&A from a panel of experienced VCs. The deadline to apply is Friday, May 12. Submit a business summary overview or presentation to Michael Rose at [email protected].

Former Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack Penned an Op-Ed About the Future of Agriculture

‘Advancements in agriculture, good for people and the plant,’ is the name of former Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack’s recent op-ed for The Hill. In it, he discusses the role of climate change, science, and the role of GMOs. Read it here.

Heineken Acquires Remainder of Lagunitas in Face of Slumping Beer Sales

Dutch brewing company Heineken has purchased Lagunitas Brewing Co, a Petaluma, CA-based craft brew company. Heineken already snagged half the company in 2015 and has now acquired the rest. Read more here. Meanwhile, the founder of Sam Adam’s asked the Department of Justice to crack down on beer giants’ takeover of craft beer outfits, describing the current market as a duopoly where AB InBev and Molson Coors control 90% of production. Read more here.

California Considers Law Loosening Restrictions on Selling Home-Cooked Food

A new bill introduced in California would make it easier for folks to sell home-cooked food. The state already allows the sale of baked goods under its cottage food permit laws, but the new bill would allow home chefs to whip out hot dishes to sell in many places, including business parks and other public locations. This could also pave the way for more startups that seek to link local cooks with hungry neighbors. Read more here.

Former Just Eat Exec to Join UK Venture Capital Firm

After stepping down from Just Eat in March, David Buttress will join London-based 83North as a partner. Read more here.

Other News That’s Fit to Chew

  • Yum! Brands CEO Greg Creed announced the company plans to invest $130 million in its struggling Pizza Hut brand, reports Meating Place.
  • A new report projects that the US meat and poultry market will be worth $100 billion by 2021, even as plant-based protein advances.
  • A group of celebrity chefs is calling for a Food March on Washington, reports Eater.

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