The Fresh Factory, a vertically integrated platform for launching clean-label plant-based foods, announced it has joined the Canadian Stock Exchange (CSE symbol: FRSH) in a bid to attract that country’s venture capitalists.
Headquartered just outside of Chicago, The Fresh Factory was created to accelerate the growth of healthier plant-based products. Led by a team of food and marketing veterans, including good food advocate Kimbal Musk, it operates a fully-equipped manufacturing facility that can quickly launch and scale innovative new brands.
Such speed is invaluable, according to the company, because most current food and beverage infrastructure is designed for large brands with huge production runs, and is thus often limited and inefficient. In contrast, Fresh Factory’s flexibility and smaller run sizes allow it to meet the immediate needs of emerging brands, and achieve in weeks what other companies can take months to do.
The platform is heavily focused on creating clean and sustainable plant-based foods, and rapidly moving fresh produce from farm to shelf. It offers comprehensive startup resources for up-and-coming food producers, including SQF Level III Certified co-manufacturing, assembly and fulfilment, logistics, financing, and sales and marketing expertise. Its staff even includes food scientists who specialize in plant-based product formulations.
The Fresh Factory’s proximity to Chicago gives it prime access to major distributors, and in 2020 alone the factory produced more than 250 products for 36 different brands, including in-house brands Field + Farmer (plant-based dressings, dips and sauces) and Element Pressed (fresh cold-pressed juices). By joining the Canadian Stock Exchange, the company hopes to further grow and expand its mission.
“We saw the Canadian venture capital markets as the perfect arena to further propel our business and to align with investors who support companies like ours — companies who want to put out great products while also helping people and reforming inefficiencies in the system,” said Nate Laurell, co-founder of The Fresh Factory.
“As a B Corporation, we set a goal to become a market leader in sustainability – everything from ensuring a fair wage for our farmers, sourcing locally, composting our waste, purchasing produce seconds (food that is often thrown out), donating a percentage of sales, and operating a diverse and equitable company. These are just a few of the metrics we track today, and we have various initiatives underway to become even more sustainable.”