Yogurt manufacturer Chobani has unveiled the nine food startups participating in its third Chobani Incubator. The Spring 2018 class is comprised of companies disrupting and improving high-potential food categories in the US, from new and innovative snack products to healthier energy drinks and nutritious foods that can help kids learn to love veggies.
The program helps entrepreneurs break into the food and beverage industries through equity-free investment and a strong focus on mentorship. Since participating in the Incubator, startups in the program’s inaugural class have seen a more than 250 percent increase in distribution and 2.6X growth in annual revenue. This year, the Incubator received 650 applications for nine spots — a 30 percent increase from last year.
For the Spring 2018 class, Chobani selected nine purpose-driven entrepreneurs whose products are helping make nutritious and natural foods more accessible and better tasting. The roster includes several brands striving to improve childhood nutrition and making it easier to eat nutritious food on-the-go, such as Fresh Bellies, a line of organic baby good that doesn’t mask vegetables with fruit, and Remedy Organics, which offers a range of 100 percent plant-based protein beverages that are USDA organic, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and soy-free.
Los Angeles-based clean tortilla company Masienda’s products only contain three ingredients and its impact-based supply chain supports more than 2,000 smallholder farmers throughout Mexico whose corn is grown using regenerative practices across 30,000 acres.
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“Through this program, we’ve seen companies double their distribution, expand their teams and launch new products — and we’re just getting started. Hamdi, our founder, hand-picked this class — our largest yet — for their unique ability to transform traditional product categories in the United States and we couldn’t be more excited to get started with them.”
The four-month program will cover topics such as building a sustainable business, innovation, team building, food quality and nutrition. It includes guest speakers, workshops, mentor rotations, field trips and social events, and exposes participants to food industry thought leaders and top retail partners.
The third Chobani Incubator class will run from April 2018 to July 2018, based out of a dedicated space designed for the Incubator at Chobani’s sales and marketing offices in New York, NY.