Square has acquired a 32-year-old restaurant delivery company

 Square has acquired Entrees On-Trays, a 32-year-old restaurant delivery platform. The plan is to expand the footprint of its on-demand food delivery service, Caviar, in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area. There were a few factors Square took into consideration in its acquisition of Entrees On-Trays, Caviar product lead Gokul Rajaram told TechCrunch via email. For one, the acquisition is designed… Read More

Privateer closes $100M round at $600M+ valuation to invest in cannabis startups

 It’s high times for the marijuana industry, which has been flourishing in recent years as more regions move to decriminalise the use of it for medical and other purposes. Now, Privateer Holdings, one of the big investors in the space, has raised $100 million to back more cannabis startups and capitalise on that trend. This Series C brings the total raised by Privateer to $200 million… Read More

Inside Amazon’s surveillance-powered no-checkout convenience store

 By now many have heard of Amazon’s most audacious attempt to shake up the retail world, the cashless, cashierless Go store. Walk in, grab what you want, and walk out. I got a chance to do just that recently, as well as pick the brain of one of its chief architects. My intention going in was to try to shoplift something and catch these complacent Amazon types napping. But it became clear… Read More

Study: Seasons have little effect on dieting app reporting but the day of week does

 If you’ve gotten three apps and a Fitbit so you can get skinnier this year, don’t worry so much about summer beach season or holiday weight gain. Instead, worry about Thursday. Researchers at University of South Carolina found that self-reporting of food was integral to weight loss but that self-reporters often fell off, seemingly around the holidays. “A key question we wanted… Read More

mRelief launches end-to-end food stamp enrollment service

 Signing up for food stamps can be cumbersome, especially for those with limited access to transportation and internet. In San Francisco, about one in four people struggle with hunger, according to the SF-Marin Food Bank. Meanwhile, $13 billion in food stamps benefits are unclaimed every year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Through startup mRelief, people with low incomes… Read More

Nima announces a $289 portable peanut allergy tester

 Peanut allergy is common and now there’s a new way to detect if a food substance contains the ingredient. Nima’s Peanut is a small, self-contained unit to detect peanuts. And like Nima’s gluten detector, it seems quick and easy to use. In both the peanut and gluten tester, the user places a pea-size chunk of food into the single-use testing tube. After this tube is placed… Read More

CTRL+T podcast: As long as it tastes like chicken, folds my clothes for cheap and doesn’t run me over

 Wait, what? Yeah, this week a company called SuperMeat announced that it raised $3 million to create chicken in a lab. It requires real chicken cells, Petrie dishes probably and some patience. The benefits for fake (fake real?) chicken are numerous, not the least of which it’s better for the environment. But we wonder how it will taste. Like chicken? Like fake chicken? In the lead-up to… Read More

Tovala, which sells ‘smart’ ovens for $399, just raised fresh funding from local VCs

 The track record for smart kitchen devices is fairly uneven. On the one hand, you have Juicero, which was widely ridiculed for selling a $400 juice machine and that shut down soon after Bloomberg reported it was no more effective than one’s own hands (but not before investors sank more than $118 million into the company). On the other hand is the Anova Precision Cooker, a $145 Wi-Fi-… Read More

Soylent co-founder Rob Rhinehart steps down as CEO

 After an eventful (and sometimes challenging) year for Soylent, co-founder Rob Rhinehart announced today that he will resign as the meal replacement shake company’s chief executive officer. That position will be taken over by Bryan Crowley, the president of Soylent’s parent company Rosa Foods. Read More

Blue Apron loses its CEO

 Blue Apron founder Matt Salzberg is stepping aside as the company’s CEO, the company announced Thursday. CFO Brad Dickerson has been promoted to take his place. It’s been a volatile past few months for the cooking kit company, which went public in June. Shares closed Thursday at just $2.99. Blue Apron had gone public at $10 per share, after originally hoping to go public between… Read More

Super Mario takes a sugar odyssey with a new breakfast cereal

 The last time Mario had a breakfast cereal, he had to split the billing with Link. I bet that’s what it felt like being in the Beatles at the end. Flying high from a recent string of high profile titles — including Mario Run and Odyssey — the cartoon plumber is finally getting a cereal box to call his own, joining the elite ranks of Steve Urkel and Gizmo from Gremlins.… Read More

Farmers Business Network just raked in a whopping $110 million in Series D funding

 Farmers Business Network has raised $110 million in new venture funding to support a business that may sound boring to some Silicon Valley technologists but which appears to have addressed a very real need: it’s a social network for farmers that invites them to share their data, pool their know-how, and bargain more effectively for better pricing from third parties. It’s a real… Read More

Uber’s losses grew to $1.5 billion last quarter

 Uber has given its shareholders an update on the company’s performance and it’s definitely in the red. The global ridesharing company lost $1.46 billion in just the third quarter. This compares to negative $1.06 billion in the previous quarter. But net revenue also went up from $1.66 billion to $2.01 billion. Gross bookings grew to $9.71 billion, versus the $8.74 billion in the… Read More

Uber donates $1 million to Meals on Wheels

 Uber has teamed up with Meals on Wheels America to help the organization fulfill its mission of providing healthy meals to homebound seniors, veterans and others. The two-year partnership entails a $1 million donation, which includes a direct contribution to Meals on Wheels and promotional codes for volunteers to get free rides, as well as volunteer support from Uber employees. Read More

Apple is giving away free Postmates Unlimited subscriptions

 If you use Apple Pay to sign up for Postmates Unlimited, you’ll be able to get free deliveries on orders over $20 and no peak hour price surging for the next 45 days, MacRumors first reported. In order to qualify for this promotion, you need to sign up by November 23. You can, of course, cancel your subscription at any time. Postmates first launched Unlimited in March 2016. The idea is… Read More

Amazon reportedly blames the U.S. Postal Service for Amazon Fresh issues

 Amazon is blaming the U.S. Postal Service for having to shut down Fresh in some areas, Recode reports. Internally, sources told Recode that Amazon is saying USPS was responsible for making the deliveries in most of the affected areas. As the story goes, Amazon is throwing shade at the USPS, telling food brands the USPS wasn’t reliable in delivering the food on time or at all, Recode reports. Read More

Postmates launches in first international city

 On-demand platform Postmates is launching in Mexico City, its first international market, today with more than 1,000 merchant partners and couriers on board. That means people who live in areas like Polanco, Condesa, Juárez, Cuauhtémoc, Roma, Jardines Del Pedregal, Lomas de Tecamachalco and Ciudad Universitaria will be able to access on-demand delivery via Postmates. “We believe… Read More

What it’s like cooking with meal kit startup Chef’d

 I’ve tried both Blue Apron and HelloFresh before, but I don’t like being locked into some subscription, so I decided to go with Chef’d this time around. Chef’d, which raised $35.2 million in August from strategic investors like pork producer Smithfield Foods and online grocer Fresh Direct, is different in that you don’t need to subscribe to anything, ever. There… Read More

Uber brings five-star rating system to UberEATS app

 UberEATS, Uber’s standalone app for on-demand food delivery, has added in-app restaurant reviews in order to help people make more informed decisions about what to eat. “We had heard from our consumers for a long time that they were interested in more information in general to help them make a decision of which restaurant to eat at,” UberEATS Product Manager… Read More

Postmates launches grocery service, scheduled deliveries and revamped app

 Postmates has always offered grocery delivery as part of its ethos of delivering anything to you within your city on-demand. Now, Postmates is taking a step further by baking in a grocery-specific service into its newly-revamped app. With Postmates Fresh, which the company has been testing in San Francisco for the last few weeks, people can order groceries via local partners for delivery in… Read More