Arcadia Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: RKDA), a leader in science-based approaches to enhancing the quality and nutritional value of crops and food ingredients, today announced the execution of a term sheet to collaborate with Corner Foods, an affiliate of Corner Capital Group, designed to bring its GoodWheat portfolio of specialty wheat ingredients to China and Israel.
Arcadia’s GoodWheat was developed to offer unique health and nutritional benefits, such as higher fiber, improved protein quality and reduced allergenic gluten. Consumer preferences strongly align with these benefits. GoodWheat ingredients reimagine the health benefits around traditional bakery items, pasta and other wheat-based food products as well as offer alternative starch solutions to the pharmaceutical industry.
“This collaboration with Corner Foods has the potential to open key international markets for products made with our GoodWheat ingredients,” said Matthew Plavan, president and CEO of Arcadia Biosciences. “We expect strong demand for healthy, ready-made products such as pastas and specialty baking mixes, and we have allocated significant GoodWheat inventories to support this growth initiative and leverage the international network of Corner Foods.”
Through Corner Foods, Arcadia’s GoodWheat ingredient-based food products will be introduced directly to consumers in China via popular e-commerce site TMall and cooking and lifestyle network Tastemade China. Together, these digital platforms reach an estimated eight million consumers in China per month.
“Tastemade is known for beautiful and engaging food, travel and lifestyle content that lets users explore cuisine from around the world through a mix of original content and user-submitted videos,” said Wayne Chen, CEO of Tastemade China. “We are excited to partner with Corner Foods to introduce viewers to Arcadia’s impressive portfolio of good-for-you wheat flours, pastas and baking mixes this fall.”
According to the research firm Mintel, China’s consumers in the post-COVID-19 environment are actively seeking a healthier lifestyle and prioritizing healthy snacks such as low-carb, low-sugar and fiber-added items. Additional research from McKinsey categorized about 49 percent of China’s population as middle-class-and-above urbanites and noted that 72 percent of these urbanites are actively seeking a healthier lifestyle, while 60 percent report always checking ingredient labels in foods.
Arcadia and Corner Foods also plan for introductions into food retail and foodservice markets in Israel, long known for food tech innovation focused on healthful ingredients. Israel is home to more than 50 agriculture and food technology start-ups. In 2018, annual investment in Israel’s food tech sector rose to $100 million, according to a report by Start Up Nation Central.
Arcadia and Corner Foods are expected to execute definitive agreements in due course.