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Supply Chain Tech Company FoodLogiQ Raises $4.25M Series B

November 3, 2017

FoodLogiQ, a leading provider of food chain traceability and transparency solutions, has secured $4.25 million in Series B funding from Vancouver-based social impact VC firm, Renewal Funds.

“Renewal’s focus on food and tech companies at the forefront of social and environmental change aligns perfectly with FoodLogiQ’s mission,” said FoodLogiQ CEO Dean Wiltse.

Founded in 2008 by Paul Richardson, Joel Solomon, and Cqrol Newell, Renewal Funds seeks to catalyze positive social and environmental change through supporting entrepreneurs through capital, networks, and expertise. In addition to FoodLogiQ, the firm has worked with Sweet Earth Foods, Seventh Generation, Farmhouse Culture, and Goddess Garden.

In business since 2006, FoodLogiQ has a mission to map the global food chain, and is developing solutions that solve the increasingly complex safety challenges faced by players along the entire food supply chain. Through daily tracking of millions of data points, leveraging the Software as a Service (SaaS) model, and through connecting thousands of global food companies, FoodLogiQ’s custom technology platform facilitates food safety compliance, recall and incident management, and complete traceability down to the lot-level through one service.

“There is [also] a lot of consumer interest in transparency and interest from the food industry on how to increase transparency in the supply chain, and that’s actually one of the factors that can also contribute to vulnerability for food fraud to even happen in the first place,” Jeffrey Moore, Ph.D., science director for the Food Program at The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention, told Food Ingredients First. “It’s important to know where a product is coming from or where it is produced which ultimately comes back to this concept of visibility and transparency within supply chains.”

Driven by the growing need for this technology in the food industry and a public that is pushing for the same, FoodLogiQ has seen rapid growth in recent months. In the last six months alone, the company has expanded its customer base to include the Hain Celestial Group, Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Panda Restaurant Group, and CKE Restaurants. These new clients join an impressive existing customer list that already included the likes of Whole Foods, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Subway, and Buffalo Wild Wings.

The company said that it plans to use the funds to continue to expand its presence and to continue to “empower people to make informed decisions about the food they eat”.

“We could not be more pleased to help accelerate the growth of the industry leader in food supply chain traceability, visibility and transparency,” said Renewal Funds CEO Paul Richardson. “The platform that FoodLogiQ has built is completely changing the food industry, and Renewal Funds is thrilled to help fuel that change.”

Technology platforms such as the one offered by FoodLogiQ are becoming critical to the future success of food producers, processors, distributors, retailers, and consumers alike, as what were once linear food supply lines, continue to evolve into complex networks.

Food Safety Magazine points out that although the U.S. produces the most tomatoes in the world, 71 percent of tomato imports into the U.S. come from Mexico and another 27 percent come from Canada. Meanwhile, Italy produces only 14 percent of the buffalo milk used for the production of mozzarella cheese, while Asia produces 86 percent. Another example of the complex nature of food supply is that the anchovies on your pizza could come from either Peru, Argentina, Croatia, Spain, or Italy, according to the magazine.

The need for food traceability is being answered in various ways. GAI News reported on another recent example this past August, when Earth Twine, a collaborative technology company dedicated to bringing leading edge technologies to bear on traditional food supply chains, and Stratis, a developer and provider of end-to-end blockchain solution applications, partnered to launch The Earth Twine-Stratis Platform, the world’s first blockchain platform dedicated to the seafood industry.

Until rather recently the notion of blockchain technology was something vague and somewhat intimidating due to its ethereal and almost philosophical operating framework. However, the technology is rapidly becoming more mainstream, and its potential applications within agricultural supply chains are becoming more evident.

“Blockchain may seem like a toy for computer geeks, but blockchain has the potential to solve problems,” said Robin Lougee, research industry lead, Consumer Products & Agriculture, with IBM Research at GAI’s AgTech Week 2017.

Also, in May of this year, OwlTing, a leading Taiwanese e-commerce platform that has built a reputation for safe food, announced the integration of blockchain technology into its supply chain, and the launch of OwlTing, the first Ethereum-based food provenance system.

Meanwhile, Walmart is partnering with IBM to integrate blockchain in order to increase the transparency and traceability of its food supply. The company is piloting a program that tracks and traces pork in China, and is planning a similar initiative in the U.S.

To learn more about Blockchain, see this recent article in the GAI Gazette.”

-Lynda Kiernan

Lynda Kiernan is Editor with GAI Media and daily contributor to GAI News. If you would like to submit a contribution for consideration, please contact Ms. Kiernan at lkiernan@globalaginvesting.com.

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