My last name has lead to a variety of interactions over the years, ranging from questions about my relationship to the classic soup maker (spoiler alert: nope, not related) to the gifting of a Andy Warhol-inspired Campbell's Soup tie from my friend's mother in grade school. Truth be told, I'm a Progresso soup guy at heart, but I do find the latest news from Campbell's to be pretty exciting.
According to the company, Campbell's will launch a $125 million venture capital fund to invest in food startups. CEO Denise Morrison said that the fund, called Acre Venture Partners, will help the soup giant participate in the "disruption" in food trends. She went on to say:
“We believe that defining the future of real food requires new approaches, new business models, smart external development and an ecosystem of innovative partners."
This is not the company's first foray into the space. Previously, Campbell's purchased Bolthouse Farms' juice business for $1.6 billion, and spent nearly $231 million for salsa maker Garden Fresh Gourmet. Clearly, the company understands the importance of finding new brands that connect with consumers that are looking for more natural, organic and better for you foods and snacks, and this demand is all-encompassing, from ingredient sourcing to food coloring and even to workplace practices.
That's not to say that Campbell's is the only big food company looking to find innovative and disruptive brands ahead of the competition. Morrison herself estimated that about 400 startups received more than $6 billion in funding, including a fund launched by General Mills in October 2015.
Who knows? Perhaps one of the emerging brands picked up by Campbell's new fund will replace Progresso soup on my table. Only time will tell.
Despite the warnings of Elon Musk, artificial intelligence is on its way. It's not a topic we've shied away from in the Food Institute Blog, either, but a few developments over the past few weeks have inspired me to once again dive into the technology of the future in hopes of determining how it will affect the food industry.read more
Now, more than ever, the issue of food waste is top of mind for the food industry. Despite retailers, foodservice operators and manufacturers trying to tackle it head on, many challenges lurk around the corner. Despite this, innovative and impactful approaches abound to tackle this complex concern.read more
Chris focuses on fresh, canned and frozen fruit and fresh and dried vegetables for the Food Institute Report. In addition, he assists in compiling data for various Food Institute publications throughout the year. He is a proud Rutgers University alumnus with a degree in English, and has a background in web writing for a variety of industries, including legal, foodservice and small-to-medium sized businesses. In his downtime you can find him watching New York Yankees baseball, hiking, enjoying live music and spending time with his dog Kaiden. He invites you to contact him via email at email@example.com to talk about anything food-related.
There are no comments, yet. Why don't you add one?
10 Mountainview Road
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
Food Institute reps are available to answer your questions
BECOME A MEMBER
For close to 90 years, The Food Institute has been the best "single source" for food industry executives, delivering actionable information daily via email updates, weekly through The Food Institute Report and via a comprehensive web research library. Our information gathering method is not just a "keyword search."