Food has become much more than three meals a day


Someone sent me this map from Rosenheim Advisors.  It is hard to read on my blog but the amount of companies in the food space is jaw-dropping and I am sure some are missing.  What would be interesting to know is how many of them started in the past 5 years.

Cooking communities, content creators, commerce, restaurant and mobile online ordering, reservations, loyalty programs….need I go on?  These businesses are changing the way we think about food.  They are also creating a jobs for the economy. 

Hot Bread Kitchen runs a food incubator program.  I have watched the applications over the past three years change significantly.  The application pool gets stronger every time and with that comes success.  Companies that are accepted go through a curriculum that really helps each entrepreneur educate themselves about how to grow their business.  Soon there will be another one from 3rd Ward.  As Craig Kanarick of Mouthfood said to me, "food is the new black".  It appears from this map that he is spot on.

The good news is that as consumers we can become more educated about what we are eating.  Companies like How Good are making that happen.  The next step is making sure that proper distribution of healthy foods are making their way into underserved neighborhoods. Having access to the huge range of verticals within the food space is a good thing for education to access to what we eat daily.  Impressive. 


Comments (Archived):

  1. pointsnfigures

    What’s the largest and most powerful lobbying group in Washington DC? Big AG and Big Food. Agree with you that we need to take control of what we put in our mouths. Over the past twenty years, I have really altered how I think about food-and how I eat. It started with a book on The Zone-and now I work out only 30m a week at Citywidesuperslow in Chicago. Last year, I lost 30 lbs and kept it off by changing the way I eat, and by increasing my muscle mass.I am not against factory farmed food. People have to eat-and should have choice. However, we need to clearly label everything to give individuals the freedom to make their own decisions. The food pyramid and a lot of the “daily requirements” are all lobbied and not necessarily in the bes interest of our actual health.For example, organic vegetables taste better in a lot of cases-but the data shows they aren’t filled with more vitamins than factory farmed ones. When I go to the store, I can make a choice-spend less on factory food that won’t have the flavor of organic, or spend a little more.Food Genius in Chicago tracks data on what we eat. They can spot food trends before they happen. Cool company.

    1. Gotham Gal

      i am so not a fan of the lobbyists. yet more and more people, like yourself, want to know what they are eating and i believe we are moving in that direction which is a very good thing. there are a lot of options too in regards to access to interesting food that is being made in random locations and that is exciting.

      1. jonathan

        A friend passed this TedTalk to me made by a b-school classmate (and former President of Fouchon) about “what our food eats”. it is worth a look.

        1. William Mougayar

          That’s a great video. Thanks! I agree.

          1. Guest

            Jonathan, can you email me re: Laurent? wmougayar AT gmail. Thanks

        2. William Mougayar

          Jonathan, can you email me re: Laurent? wmougayar AT gmail. Thanks

    2. JLM

      .Much of the “food” lobby is really focused on the value of farmland based upon its perceived productivity.The old saw that we pay landowners NOT to grow food is really true and is a travesty.This artificial support of land values — through such artificial mechanisms as crop support prices — if allowed to float freely would drive food prices down substantially.Take a look at the peanut industry wherein allotments and other artificial price supports create an artificially tiered price mechanism which simply means peanuts cost way more than they are really worth given a free market economy.It is archaic, anti-free markets and a complete waste of government money — held hostage solely by political muscle and lobbying power.It is obscene but it has next to nothing to do with food and everything to do with the value of farmland in the US.JLM.

      1. Gotham Gal


      2. pointsnfigures

        Peanuts are an excellent example. it also shows how Big Ag is universal-Republicans in the south support the peanut industry. Sugar is another. You won’t get Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio to agree on much, but I bet they are lockstep when it comes to sugar and oranges…..

    3. William Mougayar

      Do you know where that data about vitamins in organic vs. non-organic foods came from? I’m interested in knowing. What I thought was that local produce often trumps organic produce that is flown from far away & picked too early because of the travel.

        1. William Mougayar

          Thanks. Just read it, but I’m not convinced. It doesn’t concur with what Laurent Adamowicz is saying in the TEDx talk below. How can pesticides residuals be ok for the body. I think local can trump organic in terms of nutrients because the food hasn’t travelled which is when they lose their nutrients. There’s also semi-organic where they apply very light treatment to the produce.

  2. takingpitches

    On a street-level globally, I think, in restaurants, is where you see the most creativity in daily life — from food, of course, but also in service, atmosphere, physical decoration.Says something about food; it’s good to see this spread and hopefully peel off some of the dollars from Big Food.Will be good for our health, for our economy (by fueling micro-entrepreneurs) and for more generally our quality of life.

  3. William Mougayar

    When I first saw your title, I thought you were going to talk about 5 smaller meals per day as being healthier than 3 :)Nonetheless, the chart is astonishing. But when it comes to food, as much as I love all the sophistication of cooking & restaurants, I’m all for a return to local & wholesome foods as much as possible.

    1. AMT Editorial Staff

      GG and William, we’ve recently been exploring ways to educate younger kids (6-11) on the dangers of sugar. Have you heard of DunkTheJunkFood. Very interesting: http://www.dunkthejunk.orgVisuals. Now. Different.

  4. daryn

    Cool map! I’ve been thinking about organizing a food tech hack day – so many companies doing stuff in the food space these days.