The Food Nest today announced the launch of its early-stage foodtech accelerator and venture fund, and is now accepting applications for its first cohort.

Based in Alameda, California, The Food Nest is looking for companies that already have a proof of concept in at least one market and have a $500,000 to $2 million run rate. (Sorry, no kitchen table dreamers.) “We really want to scale early stage companies to phase 2 and 3,” said Eric Quick, Founder and Managing Partner of The Food Nest.

Eric Quick, Co-Founder of The Food Nest

Quick said the company’s focus is on health, wellness and nutrition. In particular, Quick said The Food Nest is interested in new plant-based foods, as well as backend technologies such as AI that can improve efficiencies in getting consumer packaged good products from concept to store shelves.

Those accepted into the program will receive an upfront investment of $40,000 for 5 percent equity in the company. In addition to money, The Food Nest’s headquarters, which are on a decommissioned naval base in Alameda, will have 100,000 sq. feet of turnkey food and beverage manufacturing space.

But for Quick and his team, it’s not just about providing financial and physical resources — they also provide a network of mentors and are looking for entrepreneurs who actively want to be coached.

Additionally, The Food Nest wants to build a thriving foodtech startup community. By locating in the East Bay, the company believes it can more easily access bootstrapping entrepreneurs who are priced out of San Francisco. The Alameda base already houses a number of beverage facilities, including Hangar 1 vodka, St. George’s Spirits and Rockwall Wines.

The Food Nest is looking to bring on 8–10 companies into its first cohort, and is working with an undisclosed third party that will use a combination of data and AI to help assess applicants. The first set of The Food Nest companies will be announced in mid-Q2 of next year.

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