How economic uncertainty is affecting the food upcycling business – Marketplace

by | Nov 24, 2022 | Business

Small-business owners across the country have felt the double whammy of inflation and slow hiring, all while a possible recession is looming on the horizon. But how do these worries play out for nontraditional businesses in larger sectors of the economy?

Take Matriark Foods, for example. It’s a social impact business that works toward sustainability in the food system through a process called upcycling. Its unique business has helped shield it from the harsh sting of inflation, but it certainly isn’t immune from its effects, the company’s boss said.

Marketplace’s Sabri Ben-Achour spoke with Anna Hammond, Matriark Foods’ founder and CEO, about her business and how it’s navigating this economic turbulence. The following is an edited transcript of their conversation.

Sabri Ben-Achour: So you are in the food upcycling business. What is the food upcycling business?

Anna Hammond: So upcycling is really making all food reach its highest value, which is feeding people. And upcyclers take food that would otherwise have gone to waste and they make products out of it. And that is anything from what we do, which is upcycling vegetable surplus and remnants, to upcycling spent grain from making beer.

Ben-Achour: Where does one get food remnants from, whether it’s the vegetables or grain from beer making?

Hammond: Yeah, so the supply chain for upcycled foods is really interesting. I like to say that we’re not doing …

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