Afresh bags $12 million Series A follow-on funding to eliminate food waste and make fresher, healthier food accessible to all
Every year, Americans waste trillion dollars of in food waste. This hurts our planet instead of nourishing people. Inefficiencies in the fresh food supply chain lead to tens of billions of dollars in fresh food waste every year in the U.S. grocery industry alone. Getting fresh management right will have big impacts for grocers; according to IRI2, about 40% of food and beverage revenue in grocery stores comes from fresh departments.
Enter Afresh Technologies, a San Francisco-based tech startup building technology to eliminate that waste and make fresher, healthier food accessible to all. Afresh’s AI solutions give grocers an easier and more accurate way to manage fresh food orders, inventory, and merchandising.
Today, Afresh announced it has raised $12 million in Series A follow-on funding to accelerate its vision to reduce food waste by billions of dollars while increasing grocery margins and brings its groundbreaking technology to more grocery partners. The round, which brings the company’s total amount raised to $20 million, was led by returning investor Innovation Endeavors with participation from Food Retail Ventures, Maersk Growth, Impact Engine, and existing investor Baseline Ventures.
Founded in 2017 by Matt Schwartz, Nathan Fenner, and Volodymyr Kuleshov, Afresh is the first artificial intelligence-powered fresh food optimization platform for grocers. Afresh uses cutting-edge A.I. to massively reduce food waste and increase profits. Grocers using Afresh have already proven that Afresh helps increase fresh food sales by 3%, reduce in-store food waste by up to 50%, and increase fresh gross margin by 4 percentage points. The trio founded the company when they were graduate students at Stanford.
“Grocery stores are the cornerstones of our communities. The current pandemic has re-confirmed the critical role grocers play in our lives. More than ever, these businesses need smart, practical ways to keep stores stocked with fresh, nutritious food, to empower frontline workers, and to run operations in a sustainable and profitable way,” said Matt Schwartz, CEO and co-founder of Afresh. “Our technologies make it easier for grocers to manage all aspects of their fresh departments, and, in doing so, dramatically expand their profitability by preventing millions and millions of pounds of food waste. We’re excited to use this new funding to bring Afresh to more grocers across the country and around the world.”
“In my twenty years running grocery businesses for Tesco, Carrefour, and Ahold USA, I have honestly never seen a tool that is so easy for the store teams to use for fresh food ordering,” said James McCann, Chairman and CEO of Food Retail Ventures and former CEO of Ahold USA. “The KPIs they are delivering are truly game changing. I am excited that this new investment will allow Afresh to support more grocers in the coming months and help us reduce food waste across the US.”