Meat alternative brand jack & annie’s raises $23M

BOULDER — Jack & annie’s, a sustainable, plant-based meat-alternative brand, has closed a $23 million Series B funding round.

The round was led by Creadev and Desert Bloom, with major participation from Wheatsheaf and existing investors BetaAngelsand InvestEco.

The funds will help the brand expand its distribution in the U.S. across retail, natural, club and foodservice channels, the company said in a press release.

Jack & annie’s is a trademark of Global Village Fruit Inc., based in Boulder, although the company operates as The Jackfruit Co.

Global Village Fruit in 2020 filed a Form D with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announcing that it had raised $4.83 million in equity funding.

The company produces a meat-alternative with jackfruit as its first ingredient.

Jack & annie’s traces its origins to a trip that founder Annie Ryu made to India a decade ago. Ryu, then a Harvard pre-med student, was introduced to jackfruit, also known as “jack,” by local farmers at a market in India.

“She immediately loved the meat-like texture and the delicious versatility in dishes but was disappointed to learn that 70% of jackfruit goes unused,” the company said in a press release. “Annie decided to make it her mission to convert this underutilized crop to nutritious, delicious food and an income stream for farming families.”

Jack & annie’s is distributed at more than 1,500 stores, including Whole Foods, Sprouts, Meijer, Wegmans, Hannaford, Target and Giant. The brand was the third-largest brand in the plant-based category in dollar sales, according to SPINS data in the Natural Channel for the 24 weeks ended Oct. 3, cited by the company.

“We are excited that our investors are partnering with us to create the next generation of plant-based — real foods, from a real plant,” CEO and founder Ryu said in a prepared statement. “They are experienced, connected investors who share our vision and values — to transform the global food system for the good of people and planet.

“We’ve known Creadev and Desert Bloom for many years and are extremely excited to take these strong relationships to the next level, joining hands as shareholders,” she added. “With their help, we are committed to continuing to craft delicious foods that deliver the benefits of plants, improving the health of our bodies, the health of the planet, and the livelihoods of our farmers.”

Jack & annie’s is available in flavors such as crispy jack nuggets, buffalo jack wings, breakfast jack sausage links and patties, jack dinner sausages and smoky jack pulled pork.

The company says that it operates the largest global jackfruit supply chain, accounting for more than 70% of all retail jackfruit products sold. Jack & annie’s also provides a market for an underutilized crop, preventing waste and providing more than 1,200 farming families with 10% to 40% of their income, the company said.

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BOULDER — Jack & annie’s, a sustainable, plant-based meat-alternative brand, has closed a $23 million Series B funding round.

The round was led by Creadev and Desert Bloom, with major participation from Wheatsheaf and existing investors BetaAngelsand InvestEco.

The funds will help the brand expand its distribution in the U.S. across retail, natural, club and foodservice channels, the company said in a press release.

Jack & annie’s is a trademark of Global Village Fruit Inc., based in Boulder, although the company operates as The Jackfruit Co.

Global Village Fruit in 2020 filed a Form D with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announcing that it had raised $4.83 million in equity funding.

The company produces a meat-alternative with jackfruit as its first ingredient.

Jack & annie’s traces its origins to a trip that founder Annie Ryu made to India a decade ago. Ryu, then a Harvard pre-med student, was introduced to jackfruit, also known as “jack,” by local farmers at a market in India.

“She immediately loved the meat-like texture and the delicious versatility in dishes but was disappointed to learn that 70% of jackfruit goes unused,” the company said in a press release. “Annie decided to make it her mission to convert this underutilized crop to nutritious, delicious food and an income stream for farming families.”

Jack & annie’s is distributed at more than 1,500 stores, including Whole Foods, Sprouts, Meijer, Wegmans, Hannaford, Target and Giant. The brand was the third-largest brand in the plant-based category in dollar sales, according to SPINS data in the Natural Channel…