Capital One Ventures, the venture arm of financial services giant Capital One, has invested in food waste specialist Goodr. The investment, the amount of which was not disclosed, was announced via a Medium post by partner Adam Boutin.
From the post:
Jasmine and her team are tackling one of the most baffling paradoxes — 80 billion pounds of food is ending up in our landfills every year, meanwhile 40 million Americans are food insecure. While most of us are aware that food waste and hunger are massive problems (with both environmental and societal implications), the scale & complexity of the issues is astonishing….
The investment marks the first move by Capital One Ventures into impact investing. According to Boutin, who is leading the impact investing efforts for the venture arm, they plan on making more in coming months in the areas of financial inclusion, environmental sustainability and future of work.
We’ve been writing about Goodr here at The Spoon for some time, in part because the company is one of the first startups to utilize blockchain as a way to better track food and help reduce waste. Here’s how company CEO Jasmine Crowe described the company’s platform back in a 2018 interview:
Goodr is a sustainable waste management platform that leverages technology to reduce food waste and combat hunger. We provide an end-to-end solution for businesses seeking to reduce their overall waste, save money and empower their local community.
Our technology coordinates the collection and distribution of food donations. Unlike our competitors, Goodr’s platform also provides an IRS audit-friendly donation record, real-time food waste analytics, and community impact reports thanks to blockchain.
In addition to providing a technology forward platform for helping corporations reduce how much food they throw out, Goodr’s also extremely active on activating partnerships in communities of need to make sure the food ends up in the right place. It’s been inspiring to watch Crowe and her team spring into action over the past year to help those hit hard by COVID-19 with efforts like their pop up stores and emergency meal kits.
Goodr is one of a number of startups in the food waste and sustainability space that are getting extra attention nowadays from investors. While food waste reduction and innovation hasn’t always gotten as much investor attention some of the other food tech spaces, COVID-19 shined a light on the fragility of the food system and made it even more clear how reducing waste made good economic sense.