Press Release

Kroger And Apeel Partner To Fight Food Waste

Company Release - 9/6/2018 6:30 AM ET

CINCINNATI and SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Sept. 6, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --

  • Apeel avocados arrive in select Kroger stores this month, marking the one-year anniversary of Kroger's Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative. 

  • Apeel avocados have double the ripe time, which means less food waste on the shelf and at home, a solution that moves Kroger closer to the goal of eliminating food waste across the company by 2025.

The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR), America's largest grocery retailer, and Apeel Sciences, recently named a 2018 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer and a CNBC Disruptor 50, today announced The Horton Fruit Company is supplying Apeel avocados to the grocer, starting in its Cincinnati market. Through the partnership, Kroger will offer the freshest avocados to shoppers and reduce food waste on the shelf and at home.

"Apeel is an innovative partner that will help Kroger reduce food waste and redefine the customer experience through first-to-market technology," said Frank Romero, Kroger's vice president of produce. "Kroger's relationship with Apeel developed as a result of the exciting work we're doing with startups and enterprising companies to create the future of retail now."

"Kroger is at the forefront of the fight against food waste and we're honored to be a resource in their journey to zero waste," said James Rogers, CEO and Founder of Apeel. "Kroger's commitment to families and the health of the environment is admirable, and together, we believe we can dramatically advance our shared goal of less waste and better-quality food for all."

With roughly one-third of food going to waste throughout the global supply chain, this partnership is a measurable step toward preventing food waste at every level. Annually, Americans throw away more than 400 pounds of food per person, costing a household of four an average of $1,8001 and collective retail losses due to food waste amount to an estimated $18 billion2. Apeel avocados maintain optimal quality and ripeness twice as long, without requiring the use of refrigeration or preservatives, stopping food waste before it happens and making it possible for premium quality avocados to reach more people across the country.

Fortune recently recognized Kroger on its 2018 Change the World list - in the sixth spot - for the retailer's bold social impact plan Zero Hunger | Zero Waste, which aims to end hunger in the communities Kroger calls home and eliminate waste across the company by 2025. The annual list highlights the work of 57 big companies across the world using their resources to solve societal problems.

Kroger is launching Apeel avocados in 109 stores in its Cincinnati market, with plans to expand to new cities. For photography of Apeel avocados in Kroger, visit here.

The Kroger and Apeel partnership comes after Apeel's news last month of $70 million in new financing led by a leading global hedge fund, Viking Global Investors, and the company's plans to accelerate operational scale-up in response to supplier and retailer demand for programs across avocado, citrus, berry, stone fruit, and asparagus categories. Please visit Apeel's website for partnership inquiries.

Every plant on earth has a peel or skin that protects it. From oranges to apples to tomatoes and raspberries, the materials found in the skins and peels of plants are ubiquitous and consumed in the human diet in high quantities every day. Made of these same materials, Apeel avocados have a little extra peel that naturally slows the rate of water loss and oxidation — the primary causes of spoilage. Apeel produce stays fresh two to three times longer, which promotes more sustainable growing practices, better quality food, and less food waste from farm to retail shelf to home. For suppliers and retailers, Apeel produce is the only product that has an optimal microclimate inside of every piece of fruit, which leads to improved quality, extended shelf life, and transportability — without requiring refrigeration, controlled atmosphere, or preservatives.

To discover grocery stores in the U.S. that carry Apeel avocados, please visit Apeel's website.

For more information, see the Apeel FAQ.

At The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR), we are dedicated to our Purpose: to Feed the Human Spirit™. We are nearly half a million associates who serve over nine million customers daily through a seamless digital shopping experience and 2,800 retail food stores under a variety of banner names, serving America through food inspiration and uplift, and creating #ZeroHungerZeroWaste communities by 2025. To learn more about us, visit our newsroom and investor relations site.

Apeel Sciences is a company that's fighting the global food waste crisis by utilizing nature's tools to prevent waste in the first place — a sustainable approach to the world's growing food demands. The company's plant-derived technology helps USDA Organic Certified and conventional fresh food growers, suppliers, and retailers improve produce quality and extend shelf life, which minimizes food waste from the farm to the retail shelf to the kitchen table.

Apeel Sciences was founded in 2012 with a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help reduce postharvest food loss in developing countries that lack access to refrigeration. Today, Apeel formulations have been proven effective at reducing the rate of spoilage for dozens of USDA Organic Certified and conventional produce categories, and the company works with partners ranging from smallholder farmers and local organic growers to the world's largest food brands and retailers.

Founded by CEO James Rogers, PhD, Apeel Sciences investors include Andreessen Horowitz, Viking Global Investors, Upfront Ventures, S2G Ventures, Powerplant Ventures, DBL Partners, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UK Department for International Development, and The Rockefeller Foundation. The company is recognized as a Friend of Champions 12.3 and a 2018 CNBC Disruptor 50, and recently won a 2018 AgFunder Innovation Award for its plant-derived technology.

1 NRDC, Wasted: How America Is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill, 2017.
2reFED, Retail Food Waste Action Guide, 2018. 


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