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*NEWS: Good Culture Raises $8 Million in Series B; CEO Jesse Merrill Talks About New Hires Facilitated by This Raise

A startup that’s made innovations in the cottage cheese market recently closed an $8 million funding round, according to a February 26 press release.

Good Culture, with HQ at the Eureka Building in Irvine, received the investment in a round led by CAVU Venture Partners, with significant investment from 301 INC, General Mills’ new business development and VC unit, and Almanac Insights, an early-stage investment firm founded by David Barber, co-owner of Blue Hill, according to the release.

Blue Hill is a working farm, restaurant, and consulting company supporting agriculture.

With a prior Series A round of $6 million, Good Culture has raised $14 million so far.

How Funds Will Be Used

Like its cottage cheese, Good Culture intends to keep its team “lean,” co-founder and CEO Jesse Merrill told OC Startups Now, via his PR company, the KONNECT Agency in Austin.

“We are investing in talent and building out our “A” team,” he told OC Startups Now, adding that the company recently brought on Patrick Jammet as VP of Marketing.

Jammet previously served at Sir Kensington’s, a condiment maker, as director of field marketing, and ultimately, VP of marketing.

He oversaw the brand through an acquisition by Unilever in 2017.

Good Culture also used the funds to hire Kristy Vigil as VP of Sales. She’s worked for big and small companies in the consumer packaged goods industry, including ConAgra Foods and Campbell Soup Company.

She was most recently the VP of sales at Danone (formerly WhiteWave Foods).

And for the first time since Good Culture’s inception, it’s expanded outside of its cottage cheese creations with its recently-launched, pasture-raised sour cream.

“With this round of funding, we will be able to invest in innovation, expand our product offerings and continue to make healing, real foods accessible to the masses,” Merrill said.

The funds will also be used to enhance in-store marketing and field marketing, he added.

Foundation

Good Culture was co-founded in 2015 by Merrill and Anders Eisner, who saw a gap in the market for high-quality cottage cheese, which they believed had the potential to lead the real food movement.

Jesse Merill, co-founder and CEO, Good Culture

The pair sought to create a brand that not only tasted “delicious,” but was healthy for consumers and the environment.

Good Culture created products with high protein, organic and non-GMO ingredients; pasture-raised milk from free-roaming cows on sustainable family farms; live and active cultures; and without additives like stabilizers, thickeners and artificial preservatives.

Good Culture has experienced more than 500% growth since launch and is sold nationally in over 11,000 stores.

 

About The Author

Deirdre Newman is a long-time journalist, who's covered OC startups for a few years.

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