Menterra Social Impact Fund, an impact focused venture capital fund, has announced a new investment in agritech startup, FarmFolks. Artha Venture Challenge, an impact investment initiative of the Singh Family Foundation, has co-invested alongside Menterra.
The Bengaluru-based company is led by Lakshmipriyan V G, a veteran in the Fruit & Vegetable space. FarmFolks is targeting two major problems in the agri sector. It is addressing supply chain inefficiencies and information asymmetry to provide fair and consistent market access for small farmers. The company is committed to delivering fresh, high quality produce to end consumers.
FarmFolks currently procures 900 MT of Fruits and Vegetables per month from its associate farmers and delivers it to consumers by partnering with institutions and retailers like Tesco’s Star Bazaar, Big Basket, Namdhari Fresh, Nature Basket, Grofers and Aditya Birla’s MORE. FarmFolks uses advanced technology for end to end supply-chain tracking. It educates farmers in globally accepted agronomic practices and gets their produce certified. It helps the farmers get better price for their products while procuring end products thereby augmenting farmer income.
Menterra funding will be used to invest in infrastructure and expand reach to cover additional products and geographies.
Commenting on the investment, A.B.Chakravarthy, Principal, Menterra Venture Advisors said, “With growing awareness around pesticide residue free fresh fruit and vegetables, the demand will continue to increase. This is the right time for F&V sector to evolve along the lines of white revolution triggered by Amul with consumers getting quality products and producers getting fair price and market access. We believe in Lakshmipriyan and his team’s vision; they have exhibited strong execution- capability to lead Farmfolks to emerge as one of the promising F&V company in India, while positively impacting lives of small farmers.”
Lakshmipriyan V G, Founder of FarmFolks said, “We are working towards getting our farmers to meet global benchmarks. We are also organizing separate groups of Organic Growers to bring them under Organic Certification.” Lakshmipriyan added that “Menterra has already used its networks to unlock talent and debt capital in addition to equity investment. Beyond capital, we appreciate Menterra’s deep understanding of the farming sector. This partnership is perfectly in sync with the way we are looking at farmer engagement and their welfare”.
Recently, Pune based agritech startup EarthFood raised its seed round of $949K (Rs 6.4 Cr) from Rairah Corporation. Prior to this, Chandigarh-based agritech startup AgNext raised Series A funding through its Omnivore partners India Fund 2.