US-based plant-based meal delivery firm plans for probable expansion to the East Coast, reports Charles Wheeldon
Thistle product display

Thistle, a US-based food and nutrition brand that delivers fully-prepared, plant-forward meals to customers, today announced it has raised $10.3 million in a Series B financing led by PowerPlant Ventures, with participation from Siddhi Capital, Alumni Ventures Group, and Rich Products Corporation’s venture arm.

Venture capital firm PowerPlant Ventures also led the San Francisco-based start-up’s Series A which closed in January last year.

Thistle said it will use the funding for geographic market expansion, including a probable additional production facility on the East Coast, setting its sights on a bi-coastal footprint this year. It currently delivers tens of thousands of meals every week to customers on the West Coast.

The company added that it will also launch new customer offerings including a free virtual consultation with its in-house dietitian, who will provide customers with access to a specialist providing guidance on how to achieve their wellness goals via a “whole food, plant-forward diet”.

Ashwin Cheryian, co-founder and chief executive of Thistle, said: “Given rapidly shifting consumer preferences and factors like time or money that impact what foods we eat, Thistle is focused on expanding its operations to become the go-to meal solution that is better for you and for the planet.

“The pandemic has revealed many challenges within the food system and increased awareness of the paramount role that diet plays in an individual’s health. With this funding, we’ll be able to support even more people through scientific, evidence-based principles of nutrition that lead to optimal wellness, enjoyable eating, and a healthier planet.”

Shiri Avnery, co-founder and chief operating officer of Thistle, added: “We review every piece of feedback and noticed a trend among Thistlers asking for additional support on how to live a healthier lifestyle. This sparked the inspiration for virtual consultations with Thistle’s registered dietician. We tested the programme last fall, and the responses were overwhelmingly positive. We’re excited to be able to officially roll out the programme to our customers this month, with the primary goal to further support our customers along each stage of their wellness journey.”

Dan Gluck, managing partner of PowerPlant Ventures, said: “Eating a plant-forward diet is the single most impactful way to reduce your overall environmental footprint, reducing climate change, pollution, resource consumption, and species extinction. Consumer demand for plant-based foods is outperforming total food growth today, and this trend is expected to increase over the next decade as more people realise that eating more plants is a critical component to the long-term health of both the planet and our population. We are thrilled to have led this round of funding for Thistle, a company whose mission we fundamentally believe in and know can make the world a better place one meal at a time.”

Date published: 6 January 2021

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