Silicon Valley’s Clean Tech Investors Eyeing Sustainable Food, Experts Say
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Food is becoming the epicenter of the growing responsible investment movement in the San Francisco Bay area’s Silicon Valley, panelists said during the impact investing discussion at Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Sustainable Food Institute last week.
“The health issues and sustainability issues of the world are becoming clarified and made personal through food,” William Rosenzweig, dean and executive director of the Food Business School, and co-founder and managing partner at Physic Ventures, told conference-goers during the panel discussion entitled “New models for funding sustainable food systems.”
In the Silicon Valley, renowned for the explosion of technology investments throughout the last few decades, food is increasingly becoming a focal point for investors, according to panelists.
“If you were a clean tech investor now you can be a food investor,” Rosenzweig said.
The region has all the right ingredients for the food investment trend to take off: California’s agriculture-focused economy, the liberal food culture of the San Francisco Bay area, and the Silicon Valley’s hotbed of investors eyeing new trends. More and more these investors are turning to impact investing — investments aiming to balance social and environmental returns with financial returns.
Impact investing interest is growing particularly strong for seafood, Monica Jain, creator of the sustainable seafood investment competition Fish 2.0, told Undercurrent after the talk.