E4: The online grocery store that just raised $16.5M to save the world’s ugly food - Misfits Market
Billions of pounds of fresh and delicious food is tossed each year because grocery stores only want "perfect" foods on their shelves. “Onions that are too small, potatoes that are shaped like your favorite celebrity, and carrots that fell in love and got twisted together.” Global food waste generates 3.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide annually, making it one of the single biggest contributors to planet-harming emissions.
Misfits buys the “imperfect” fruit and vegetables from hundreds of farms across the country and sells them direct-to-consumers at 50% off, saving us money and helping us save the world.
“It's a subscription box of sometimes funny-looking, always delicious produce, designed to break the cycle of food waste. Think of us like an online grocery store, except one that specializes in rescuing food that is unnecessarily thrown away.”
Abhi Ramesh, Founder and CEO of Misfits Market, joins Peter on this week’s episode to discuss:
The scale of the food waste and accessibility problems
How Abhi discovered the problem and his “eureka moment”
Talking to hundreds of farms while building V1
What goes on behind the scenes to enable the end-to-end consumer experience
Running a massive warehouse and distribution center
Hiring “Misfits” from the community
How Misfits has convinced 1000s of consumers to purchase “food waste”
Broader market shifts around sustainability and how important brand is in building climate solutions
What’s next from here
The moonshot and potential sum total impact
Lightning Round questions:
If you weren’t working on Misfits, where would you be investing your time experimenting?
What’s your favorite interview question and why? (in context of hiring)
If you could invest in one other company in the industry, who would it be and why?
What’s something you believe to be true that most people don’t agree with you on?
Who has had the greatest impact on your learning and why?
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Dan Mahoney and Lucas Arndt