By Megan Rose Dickey
There's a growing number of startups focusing on the food market.
That's likely because, as VC Dave McClure says, the market opportunity for food technology is huge.
Last year, investors poured in roughly $350 million into food startups, according to CB Insights.
Last month, Food Hackathon hosted its inaugural event in San Francisco with the goal of teaming up entrepreneurs, developers, and designers to create products geared toward the food ecosystem.
And just last week, Seamless and GrubHub announced a merger, bringing even more attention to food startups.
HealthyOut helps people find meals at local restaurants that match your diet.
Location: New York, N.Y.
Founders: Jonathan Hironaga, Wendy Nguyen, Dan Myers
Concept: HealthyOut helps you find dishes at local restaurants that match your diet criteria. Once you select your diet restrictions, HealthyOut plans out your weekly meals (lunch and dinner) for you and delivers them right to your door. HealthyOut is currently available in New York, lower Manhattan to be exact.
Funding: $1.2 million from 500 Startups, Bradley Harrison Ventures, Peter Horan, Jan Brandt, Dave Kassling, Josh Knowles, and others.
UNREAL takes the junk out of candies and eventually snacks.
Location: Boston, Mass.
Founders: Nicky Bronner, Michael Bronner, Adam Melonas
Concept: UNREAL offers a line of candies that are just as delicious as their mainstream counterparts, but without all the junk.
UNREAL doesn't use any corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, artificial ingredients, genetically modified organisms, or preservatives. Instead, it uses all natural ingredients and is made with 40% less sugar than candies from major brands.
Funding: Undisclosed amount from Khosla Ventures and Raptor Consumer Partners.
ZeroCater is aiming to make office-wide lunches easier.
Location: San Francisco, Calif.
Founder: Arram Sabeti
Concept: ZeroCater aims to prevent Sad Desk Lunch by helping companies coordinate family-style catering for their employees. It turns out that half of all adults who eat at work (47%) do so at their desks, which carry 400 times more bacteria than a toilet seat, according to a study last December.
ZeroCarer only works with the best local restaurants and accommodates any dietary restrictions. ZeroCater is currently available in the San Francisco Bay Area and New York City.
Funding: $1.5 million from Keith Rabois, Paul Buchheit, Yuri Milner, SV Angel, Start Fund, Stewart Alsop, Justin Kan, Emmett Shear, and others.