This is part of Supermarket News’ 2017 Disruptors package. See the entire lineup here.
Farmstead is an artificial intelligence micro-grocer operation that believes it is poised to “reinvent” the supermarket model — if not completely eliminate it. Billed as delivering “fresh food from farm-to-fridge in 60 minutes” the Silicon Valley-based company is currently operating in the San Francisco Bay area, where it has completed over 17,000 deliveries.
“We are the store; we have a completely overarching technology platform,” said Pradeep Elankumaran, Farmstead’s CEO and co-founder. He described the traditional model of a large brick-and-mortar supermarket as “not necessary anymore.”
Farmstead customers select items they’d like to purchase from what the company calls a “curated array of local farm produce and grocery products.” After the first order is placed, Farmstead’s AI technology uses the shopping list to predict each user’s habits and thus knows precisely how much food to order from local providers on a regular basis.
“In 2017, consumers shouldn’t have to drive to the store, stand in a line and buy food of questionable quality, which then goes to waste,” said Elankumaran. “By sourcing and delivering the best products to customers in just the right amounts in under an hour, we help our customers throw out less food and take fewer trips to the store each week, cutting down on waste and pollution.”
Farmstead aims to reduce waste in a grocery industry that generates 38 million tons of food waste each year and sees one in seven truckloads of perishable food items delivered to stores wasted.
The company also offers a 30-minute Express Pickup service at micro-hubs located in San Francisco and San Mateo. Orders are available within 30 minutes of online placement.
Prior to launching Farmstead in 2016, Elankumaran spent several years building and running design and operations-focused consumer technology products and led mobile video monetization and Livetext at Yahoo. He also managed the driver growth product team at Lyft.
“At a time when the tech sector is trying to figure out what the future of grocery shopping will be, we are rolling out a new digital grocer that solves for convenience, food waste and geographic density.” said Elankumaran.