Agrifood Tech | July 16, 2020

Lightship Capital backs foodtech startup FreshFry as its first investment

Jessica Pothering
ImpactAlpha Editor

Jessica Pothering

ImpactAlpha, July 16 – Louisville, Ky.-based FreshFry has developed a plant-based product that helps food service businesses extend the life of frying oil. FreshFry’s “pods” strip water, acids, metals and other impurities out of cooking oil, slowing breakdown by several days and helping businesses save on costs while improving food taste.

The tech was developed by founder Jeremiah Chapman, who collected cooking oil to convert to biofuel as a student at University of Louisville. FreshFry’s pods are made of plant waste. They aren’t biodegradable or compostable but the company claims they’re earth-safe and “will actually capture pollution in soil.”

FreshFry’s product is now sold nationally via food distribution giant Sysco.

The Black-owned company has raised $3.3 million from Lightship Capital, a fund backing under-represented founders, and Open Prairie Rural Opportunities Fund, an agrifood venture investing initiative of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Cincinnati-based Lightship’s investment in FreshFry comes on the heels of its $22 million first close. “When starting a new fund, you want to select a first investment that signals the quality of your future selections to your investors,” founder Candice Matthews Brackeen said.