When VitaBowl launched its food-as-drugs meal supply business three several years ago out of the Twitter setting up in San Francisco, its founding staff of four had a bold vision in mind: weaving alongside one another medically tailored foods and well being insurance suppliers to much better provider persons struggling from persistent sicknesses.
Originally, VitaBowl’s plant-ahead superfood meals were created by nutritionist Sarah Brandow and Michelin-star chef Dominique Crenn, who are equally co-founders of the business, in addition to Charles Michael Yim and Miko Lorenzo. VitaBowl companions with agreement makers, which includes Territory Meals, to offer you a wide range of dietary choices — low carb, pescatarian, and so on., though lately branching out into vegetarian burgers and juices.
After serving many B2B clients across authorities, K-12 educational institutions, hospitals (UCLA, Cedars Sinai Clinic by using Sodexo) and firms, building $1 million in annual revenue, VitaBowl’s team reconfirmed their perception that health care offers a sizeable white-area possibility for the food prep field.
“Our goal is to in essence collaborate with the well being insurance plan companies, so that these meals and packages are medically personalized and reimbursable, which is, rather frankly, very distinctive than some other meal prep solutions,” mentioned Yim, who also serves as executive chair of VitaBowl.
“If you imagine about the major 10 long-term diseases these kinds of as diabetic issues and heart condition, these are all problems that can be treated or mitigated in a constructive manner by applying a incredibly regimented, medically tailor-made program.”
Yim notes how a lack of individuals-focused players in the saturated meal prep market has specified their organization a exclusive competitive gain, coupled with the simple fact that both equally U.S. general public and personal sectors are significantly aware of the worth of accessing nutrition to stop long-term health issues. Past yr, the White House pledged more than $8 billion in commitments to fight malnourishment with Kaiser Long term signing up for with $50 million.
To greater penetrate the wellness care industry, VitaBowl raised a $3 million seed funding at $10 million in valuation led by Gaingels with more participations from investors, including Ann Metzger, Tanner Holmes, Matt Mackowiak, Ajay Nwosu, Tiarne Hawkins, and Denis Lam, who was just lately appointed as the company’s new CEO and VP of Merchandise and Engineering, as well as Guggenheim relatives business, LA Fund, Murano Team, and Upper Capital.
Paul Grossinger, founder of Gaingels, wrote me by way of email: “Gaingels invested in VitaBowl at the rear of a potent group and buyers with a daring eyesight for food items as drugs that has the potential to make a authentic effect in the current meals system. We had been also energized by their operate with 1 of our portfolio organizations encouraging them scale.”
Crenn also added: “I believe that you really should feed by yourself with large vibrational food that’s nutrient dense and personalized for your physique. Foodstuff is drugs. Meals connects you with what matters. VitaBowl embraces that ethos.”
Medically personalized meals Through Insurance policy Suppliers
There are essentially two health treatment courses VitaBowl is concentrating on: supplemental and prescribed, in accordance to Yim. “Supplemental is primarily medicare, healthcare aid as it relates to the elderly inhabitants. Supplemental reimbursement from insurance is relevant to the major 10 health conditions, regardless of whether it is most cancers or Alzheimer’s — that is currently out there on the federal level.”
“But what we’re aiming for in the lengthy term is the prescription aspect,” he defined.
VitaBowl is now inching nearer to the goal of having its plant-ahead superfood foods reimbursed for sufferers involved in certain health and fitness care strategies, potentially with Blue Cross Blue Protect, specifically immediately after the company released an insurance policy code in 2022 to assistance Californian consumers subsidize their medically customized meals.
“We’re also engaging with Aetna
VitaBowl’s personalized diet plan on the internet has helped the enterprise garner a rising selection of company contracts. Boosted by its ambitious expansion program across retail in 2023, VitaBowl is on observe to be worthwhile, attaining $5 million in profits by calendar year stop.
Commenting on VitaBowl’s long run developments, Yim claimed the corporation is actively formulating quite a few new SKUs, including frozen foods by way of a partnership with Golden West, even though perfecting its elements and flavors.
“Our most important strategy and target is B2B for the up coming section of the firm’s advancement as we are higher margin, have around zero marketing and advertising shell out, and are really scalable, all of which place us to make a authentic effects on the food stuff program,” he explained. “We have currently been approached two times for acquisition. We’ve declined them so far, but we are open to it in the long run.”