Danone-backed Ready, Set, Food! raises $3.5m in funding to accelerate early allergen introduction mission

The latest funding round was led by new investor, Edward-Elmhurst Health, with support from returning investors Danone Manifesto Ventures, investor and entrepreneur Mark Cuban, and AF Ventures (formerly AccelFoods).

“As a healthcare provider, we see the need for support and education regarding food allergies as paramount. We are seeing allergies reach their highest levels yet nationwide, especially among children and we see the devastating downstream effects that severe allergies can have on families in our communities,”​ said Mel Cohen, managing director of Edward-Elmhurst Health Venture Capital.

“We chose to invest with Ready, Set, Food! to support their innovative, tangible three stage system that helps families navigate and safely, easily, and effectively introduce allergens.”

The US published its early allergen introduction guidelines as part of the USDA 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines​, ​which includes a section on introducing infants to potentially allergenic foods, including peanuts. The USDA also recommended that for infants at high risk of peanut allergy (i.e. infants that have severe eczema, egg allergy, or both) to introduce age-appropriate, peanut-containing foods as early as 4- to 6-month-olds.

However, even with these guidelines in place and several leading health organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAAI) all recommending introducing allergenic foods such as peanut early, there is a real need to educate parents on the benefits of early allergen introduction, says Ready, Set, Food!

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