After last week’s announcement that Rabobank, a global food and agribusiness bank, is bringing Byte!, its food and agriculture pitch competition to Montreal in 2018, there’s more good news from the food startup sector.
Avrio’s Managing Director and co-founder Aki Georgacacos will join Jonathan Ross Goodman, co-founder and former CEO of publicly traded Paladin Labs Inc. and founder and CEO of Knight Therapeutics Inc., as lead investor and Board member.
Montreal-based FODY was launched by CEO Steven Singer last year, and has already become North America’s leader in manufacturing, developing and commercializing of low FODMAP foods for the millions of people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
It will use the funding to accelerate its US and Canadian online and retail distribution and develop new products.
The number of Americans suffering from IBS is up to a whopping 15%. Developed by an Australian research team, and increasingly accepted as the primary management for IBS there, a low FODMAP diet privileges foods containing minimal amounts of short-chain carbohydrates, named FODMAPs (Fermentable Oligo-saccharides, Di-saccharides, Mono-saccharides And Polyols). These short-chain carbohydrates are poorly absorbed in the small intestine and rapidly fermented by bacteria in the gut.
FODY CEO Steven Singer previously co-founded and led Claridge-backed Glutino Inc., the gluten free success story, and he sees similarities between the two companies.
“The greatest part of Glutino was helping millions of people living with Celiac Disease manage a gluten-free diet and ultimately feel better,” said Singer. “The Low FODMAP diet, which involves eliminating certain foods such as garlic and honey, is medically proven to reduce the triggering of uncomfortable symptoms associated with IBS. For over 45 million North Americans living with IBS, eating is a constant source of stress. We are thrilled to offer a wide portfolio of great tasting, certified low FODMAP foods to touch people’s lives in a delicious way”.
Avrio was established in 2002 to identify and invest in innovative food and agriculture companies that provide solutions to global challenges in the areas of health, wellness and sustainability. The team has been an active investor in the space for nearly 15 years, and has completed more than 50 investments in that time. Avrio’s FODY investment is well aligned to its investment portfolio in agriculture, food, and food technology sectors.
“Embracing the low FODMAP diet by the 15% of our population with IBS is at its infancy. As North American market leader, FODY is well positioned to help millions of people,” said Aki Georgacacos, Avrio’s Managing Director and co-founder.
If Singer’s hunch about the gluten intolerance craze is any indicator, get ready to jump onboard the low FODMAP diet.