GreenPod Labs, an agri-biotech startup, has raised ₹ 4.05 crore (€ 500K) pre-seed round in a funding round led by Indian Angel Network (IAN) with Rockstart as a co investor. The Chennai-based startup aims to utilise the freshly infused investment to strengthen its R&D foundation and commercially scale product portfolio. The funding will also be directed towards expanding the R&D and operations team.
Founded in 2019 by Deepak Rajmohan and Vijay Anand, GreenPod Labs intends to minimise fresh produce loss by introducing cost-effective packaging solutions. The company has developed biotech-based packaging sachets that extend the shelf-life of fruits and vegetables by eliminating the need for cold storage and cold supply chains. GreenPod Labs targets farmers, distributors, retailers, and eCommerce platforms with crop-specific solutions that increase their shelf life at ambient temperatures.
Deepak Rajmohan, Co-Founder, GreenPod Labs, said: “Even after being the second-largest producer of fruits and vegetables, India loses over 40 per cent of the fresh produce before it reaches the consumers. Each year, the country bears an economic loss ranging over $ 12 billion due to the lack of proper storage facilities. At GreenPod Labs, we are committed to solving this issue by developing cost-effective storage solutions. Our core objective is to create sustainable packaging products to minimise agricultural food wastage in India. With the recent funding, we plan to bolster our R&D foundation, both for biotech products and data science platforms. Also, we look forward to commercially scaling our three core products this year.”
“GreenPod Labs is revolutionising the Agri-biotech industry. They have been building a range of innovative biotech-based solutions for prolonging the life of fresh produce at ambient temperature. It is a one-of-its-kind initiative that caters to agricultural producers, distributors, and retailers to help them extend the fresh produce shelf life during transport and storage by 40 per cent," said Uday Chatterjee, Lead Investor, IAN.
Further commenting on the round, Mark Durno, Managing Partner Agrifood, Rockstart added: “We first invested in GreenPod Labs in 2020 because we believed in the co-founders and their mission to create organic solutions to extend the shelf life of fresh produce post-harvest, thus reducing the huge food waste issue.”
Providing customisable biotech packaging sachets, GreenPod Labs is looking forward to launching products for three crops. The company is also working on developing four more products this year.
Vijay Anand, one of the co-founders, has completed his fellowship at the Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad (IITH) last year. “IITH has been helpful in providing valuable business inputs, mentor and market connects for GreenPod Labs,” told The Hindu.