USA – California-based agtech innovator, Crop Enhancement has raised US$8 millon in a Series B financing round led by Spruce Capital, to expand its proprietary plant-based and sustainable crop protection solutions.

Joining Spruce are existing investors 1955 Capital, Phoenix Venture Partners, Cavallo Ventures, and new investors Davinia Investments Ltd. and Alexandria Ventures.

Crop Enhancement has developed proprietary plant-based coatings that protect crops from pests and diseases, providing an alternative to synthetic pesticides and pesticide applications.

Crop Enhancement plans to use the funding to support strategic partnership development with agrochemical companies and regional distributors.

The company also intends to broaden field trial targets in high-value fruit and vegetable segments and advance regulatory efforts in the United States, European Union, Brazil, and Central America.

Target crops include almond, coffee, cacao, and high-value fruit and vegetables,

“This latest financing reflects the successful de-risking of multiple aspects of our business: we’ve advanced our core technology, brought in top talent, addressed regulatory requirements, and cultivated several market-entry approaches,” said Kevin Chen, CEO of Crop Enhancement.

“Helping growers protect or enhance crop yield is even more important during the current crisis.

“We are grateful for the support of our investor syndicate and look forward to welcoming other like-minded organizations and investors to join our mission.”

Crop Enhancement’s proprietary sustainable bio-compatible solution beneficially protect plant surfaces by significantly improve their resistance to pests and diseases while at the same time decrease the need for synthetic pesticides.

The company says that its first product, CropCoat, offers growers a new sustainable solution with effective modes of action that has demonstrated yield protection and enhancement relative to synthetic chemistries in several global crops.

The Series B raise, along with recent appointments of industry experts Jean Pougnier and Damian Hajduk to its leadership team, enables Crop Enhancement to focus more resources on its go-to-market initiatives and broaden its IP portfolio.

Greg Young, managing director at Spruce Capital Partners said: “Today’s consumers are increasingly aware of and concerned about how their food was grown and made.

“In response, the agriculture and food industries are investing in new approaches to improve production. That’s why we’re so excited about Crop Enhancement, whose technology provides growers with crop protection solutions that employ softer and safer chemistries.”