US agricultural tech firm Cambridge Crops has raised $4 million in seed funding for its pioneering silk-powered technology, designed to combat food waste throughout the supply chain. The round was led by MIT’s venture capital firm The Engine, and includes participation from Refactor Capital, Closed Loop Ventures, Bluestein & Associates, SOSV and Supply Chain Ventures.
Applied to food, the silk-based solution slows the exchange of gases that cause decay. Based on a natural protein that is extracted from silk through a water-based process, once the solution is applied to the surface of a food item, it forms an imperceptible protective layer that prevents oxidation, improves water prevention, and slows microbial growth. The patented technology can be integrated at any time from farm to shelf, allowing food producers, food processors, and retailers to extend shelf lives, reach new markets, and reduce waste.
Edible and tasteless, the protective layer does not alter the food, yet still delivers a significantly longer shelf life. The solution can be easily implemented at a wash or coating station in the supply chain, and has proven efficacy across food products ranging from whole produce and cut produce to meat and fish.
The patented technology is designed to be integrated at any time from farm to shelf, to allow food producers, food processors, and retailers to extend shelf lives, reach new markets, and cost-effectively reduce waste.
“Our team is focused on improving how we interact with our food supply,” said Adam Behrens, CEO of Cambridge Crops. “The technology we’ve developed has far-reaching impact, from minimizing our reliance on single-use plastics to expanding global access to safe and nutritious foods.”
Cambridge Crops will use the funding to complete FDA and USDA regulatory milestones, invest in production scale-up, and continue developing meaningful commercial partnerships in the food and agriculture industry.
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