January 27, 2023

Black Founder Raises $2.1M For Her “Food Is Medicine” Digital Health Platform

Black-owned patient-driven digital platform, Free From Market (FFM), is one of a few food platforms working to empower individuals living with chronic health conditions. 

According to reports, African Americans are generally at higher risk of chronic health conditions such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, asthma, influenza, and pneumonia. 

To tackle this issue, Emily Brown decided to launch Free from Market, an easy-to-use app to help give Black and brown people access to diet-specific foods that can help improve their overall health. 

After years of providing customers with personalized data to help them improve their health, the app has announced closing a $2.1 million seed investment fund. 

The funding round, which Bluestein Ventures led, included Acumen America, Beta Boom, KCRise Fund, 1st Course Capital, and AssetBlue ventures. Additionally, the startup has also joined Google’s Startups Black Founders Fund. 

“One in three Americans have a condition where food is part of the standard of care, yet many Americans do not have access to food and resources needed to treat it,” said Emily Brown, co-founder, and CEO of FFM, in a statement.

Free from Market allows users to order specific foods online based on their dietary requirements. It provides them with the necessary nutrients and meals to live healthier lives.  

“Our new investors and partners, who bring expertise in food, supply chain, and digital health, provide us the opportunity to reach and impact more people,” said Emily Brown.

“Every household, regardless of income or zip code, deserves access to high-quality food and ongoing support that meets their specific healthcare needs,” she added. 

Brown is a big believer in food acting as a form of medicine and has built her entire business model around that idea. Additionally, FFM offers direct-to-door access to individuals to buy meals or brand-name grocery items. Users can also receive complimentary telenutrition support. 

“Our curated food is free from ingredients an individual does not want and full of all the nutrients they need to manage a healthy life. This funding round is merely one milestone towards our goal to make a lasting impact to improve healthcare in this country.” 

Kumba Kpakima

Kumba Kpakima is a reporter at POCIT. A documentary about the knife crime epidemic in the UK got her a nomination for the UK's #30toWatch Young Journalists of the Year.