$9B Egg Industry Inefficient: Hampton Creek CEO

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Dec. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Hampton Creek Foods CEO and Founder Josh Tetrick discusses innovations in the egg industry with Deirdre Bolton on Bloomberg Television's "Money Moves." (Source: Bloomberg)


First of all, what gave you the idea that an entirely planned formula -- plant-based formula could be used to replicate eggs?

The funny thing about food is the more that you look at it, the more bizarre it is, the more inefficient it is, particularly egg production.

1.8 trillion eggs are laid every year around the world and most of them come from pretty crazy places.

Imagine chickens in cages, fed this feed, it just seems silly.

Starting from day one together, we might not do it like that.

We might look at plants that are a lot more affordable and efficient.

I know that bill gates and peter teal, both of the founders are backers.

How did you connect with them?

It is funny, when you look at peter teal, bill gates, they are used to investing in cutting- edge technology, right?

Used to investing in personalized health and all of these innovations from clean energy, when they look at food it almost stuns them how much it lacks innovation.

So, we approach them initially through a friend of mine who introduced us to a partner of theirs and we began to tell a story, we began to share the story of how inefficient our food system is.

What was their reaction?

I am just curious.

Did they lean forward or did they think that you were crazy?

They definitely leaned forward and does it was pretty stunning.

1.8 dollar trillion eggs -- one point 8 trillion eggs comes from all of these crazy places in a scale that boggles the mind.

I think they are interested in attacking industries that are pretty inefficient.

That is certainly the case with the chicken egg.

What kind of legalities do you have to pay attention to?

I know that there are some big food companies out there that are already clients.

Do you have to label this?

What is involved from a legal perspective?

We found 11 plants around the world that outperform the chicken egg in big markets.

The plants that we currently use on the market are certified grass, generally regarded as safe.

In that case we are fine, using plants that are unbelievably functional.

There are some we have identified that are not certified and in that a citizen application to the fda, talking about how it could be important in the food system and to farmers.

That application process is ongoing but what is in the marketplace right now is certified and really it is just a particular understanding of the complexity of plants in selecting and making them work for us.

How long does the application process take?

How long does it take for you?

I know it is different for each.

To give you one example, we sell mail right now -- mayonnaise right now, and we use a yellow pea that is unbelievable.

There are over 5000 species of yellow pe and we have selected one that works for us.

So, we do not have to do anything order to get approved to sell it, it is selling right now.

You are essentially taking on a $9 billion industry and i imagine the people you are taking business from are not going quietly.

What kind of pushback are you getting?

We were interested to see the u.s. egg industry launch a campaign against our company a few weeks ago.

You could not of been that surprised, right?

Well, we still have a long way to go.

We are a team of 34 people and we are not a multibillion dollar company yet.

In a few years we will be, but it was a bit of a surprise.

If you look at it from their perspective, they are selling enormous amounts of eggs that come from these really inefficient places.

The chicken egg from our perspective is not a bad thing, it is the system that surrounds the chickens.

Not all, that is why we have supported free range farmers.

But they are concerned, they are coming in with something -- we are coming into something that is 21% less expensive.

We can do things differently.

Thank you very much cool.

Josh is joining us there, the

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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