USA – Boston-based plant-based meal kit company, Purple Carrot, has launched a new service, The Garden Incubator, that will be made available to select early-stage plant-based companies looking to scale.
Purple Carrot intends to use The Garden as an investor, incubator and a launch pad that will provide a range of services confirming product-market fit and establishing confidence and awareness for future investment and growth.
“The plant-based space is in the midst of a powerful transformation with a range of early-stage brands that are struggling for investment dollars, product-market fit, and distribution,” said Purple Carrot founder and CEO, Andy Levitt.
“With The Garden our goal is to accelerate the positive trajectory of qualifying brands, improve their focus and enable rapid and improved distribution in the US and beyond.
“The de-risking of brands for future follow-on investment will be a key differentiator for this service.”
The five-year-old company is also getting into the venture capital space. In addition to supporting entrepreneurs with a variety of business services such as strategy, branding, marketing, e-commerce, operations, fulfillment, and data analytics, Purple Carrot said it will provide companies with up to US$250,000 in seed funding.
Unovis Partners, the leading venture capital firm in the plant-based space, will provide the funding to those companies meeting its mandate and criteria through its New Crop Capital fund and serve as the Founding Sponsor for The Garden.
“The Garden is a peerless concept that will serve entrepreneurs and investors equally well,” said Chris Kerr, Chief Investment Officer from Unovis Partners.
“Early-stage companies can get support by industry veterans, along with rapid market validation to de-risk for future funding rounds. We’re thrilled to be a part of this plant-based revolution with Purple Carrot.”
In Japan, Purple Carrot has also partnered with Oisix to create plant-based meals for flexitarians consumers in Japan, as interest in this type of lifestyle continues to gain momentum.
This follows the company’s recent expansion in the market with the launch of a version of its meal kit in Japan through Oisix.
Purple Carrot joined Oisix ra daichi Inc. (Oisix), Japan’s largest meal kit and organic food delivery service in May of this year.
The Purple Carrot meal kits including Spicy Chickpea Coconut Curry and Tofu Bibimbap with Komatsuna, Leek and Carrot will be delivered direct to Japanse consumers via the Oisix website.
Purple Carrot was founded in Boston in 2014 by Andy Levitt and Mark Bitman. In May last year, the company raised US$4 million in strategic funding from Fresh Del Monte Produce.