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Peapod Creators Receive $4.6M to Fund Sifter Platform

Company seeks to transform and personalize online food shopping
Sifter founders
Photograph courtesy of Sifter

Sifter SP LLC has received a $4.6 million seed round to accelerate the rollout of its personalized nutrition shopping platform built to reach the 200 million consumers who seek products that match specific diets, medical needs and lifestyles. The round was led by Valor Equity Partners through its Valor Siren Ventures fund and Hyde Park Angels, in line with a strategic focus on companies addressing personalized nutrition and wellness.

E-commerce entrepreneurs Andrew and Thomas Parkinson, creators of the online grocery service Peapod and consumer product data provider ItemMaster, launched Sifter to address the need for a more efficient way to shop for special diets and preferences.

The Sifter platform uses new, proprietary technology to address the convergence of personalized nutrition and shopping, the company said.

“Sifter has the potential to transform how people buy food online,” said Pete Wilkins, managing director of Hyde Park Angels. “With this personalized platform, customers can easily find and buy products that align with their nutritional priorities. We are excited to support the team as it continues to grow.”

Sifter is free to use. Shoppers set their own diet criteria via a MyDiet Profile that includes the ability to exclude products with allergens or specific ingredients. And they can set up multiple profiles for themselves and their family members. Sifter’s technology matches only qualified products to the active profile from an assortment of more than 100,000 items. Once the products are selected, shoppers choose one of Sifter’s retail partners to make their purchase.

These partners include Walmart, Amazon, Target, Walgreens, Stop & Shop, Giant and Kroger-owned stores, with many more to be added soon, Sifter said.

“The Sifter platform focuses on the $100 billion market driven by special-diet shoppers. This sales growth, accelerated by COVID and an increased interest in health awareness, created urgency for a better online shopping experience, driving more personalization, product discovery and demand for accurate product detail,” the company said, pointing to the 85 million Americans who now avoid buying food containing the top allergens such as peanuts, milk and wheat.

With Sifter, shoppers can automatically weed out or “sift” through product labels and eliminate those containing allergens. Sifter’s business model is based on delivering these motivated special diet shoppers to retailers and CPGs seeking a more efficient and targeted engagement. In addition, Sifter is a tool for healthcare professionals and dietitians because it makes it easy to follow critical dietary instructions, says the company.

“With 30 years of experience in both online grocery and product data, our passion has been to create a simple, easy-to-use platform that helps people better manage their health through diet and nutrition,” said Parkinson. “In doing this, we also support product discovery by shoppers who value a brand’s benefits, story and mission. I think we’re accomplishing this with Sifter.”

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