Food on the move Aug. 22

By Frank Buhagiar on Monday 22 August 2022

Food on the move Aug. 22
Image source: Food on the move Aug. 22
CommentaryFoodTech Investment

FFF’s weekly roundup of listed FoodTech’s movers & shakers

Tough week for listed FoodTech – by close of play on Friday 19 August 2022, companies with share prices down on the week outnumbered those with gains by more than three to one.  In all, 37 companies were nursing share price falls, while only 11 were celebrating rises.

Top riser with a 30% gain was Laird Superfood (LSF).  The shares closed the week at US$2.65 after the plant-based foodie co-founded by big wave surfer Laird Hamilton revealed it had received a US$3 per share cash offer from EF Hutton SPV I LLC.  LSF’s Board is reviewing the unsolicited offer, so watch this space to find out if the market will soon be giving LSF a big wave good-bye…

Close behind LSF was Blue Apron (APRN), whose shares soared 27.5% to US$4.86 for…er…no apparent reason.  In the absence of any company announcements, The Motley Fool thinks it has the answer in its helpfully-titled article: “It looks like a short squeeze may have been in play for the meal kit company this week.”

Elsewhere Just Eat Takeaway (TKWY) rose 15% after unveiling the £1.5 billion (US$2 billion) sale of its stake in its Brazilian business to Dutch investment company Prosus.  The proceeds will be used to reduce debt.

Turning to the fallers, top of the list (or should that be the bottom?) was TSE-listed CubicFarm Systems (CUB) which ended the week with half the market cap it started with.  The shares closed at CAD0.195 after the indoor-growing tech company posted increased losses for the first half along with a drop in revenues.  Higher costs were to blame.   

Other notable fallers included shares in Agrify (AGFY) which were off 35% at US$1.03 after Q2 results from the solutions provider to the cannabis industry disappointed; similar story for similar company Urban-gro (UGRO), whose shares were down a third at US$4.22 after its Q2 numbers fell short of expectations; and Chinese fresh-food retailer Missfresh (NAS: MF) continued its slump, falling a further 27% this week to just US$0.13 – at the start of the year the shares were trading at US$5.01.

Finally, Beyond Meat’s (BYND) shares ended the week 20% cheaper at US$29.17. Sentiment appears to have taken a knock on the news that restaurant chain Taco Bell is trialing its own plant-based meat substitute product – in 2021, BYND signed a partnership deal with Yum Brands in 2021 to create exclusive menu items for KFC, Pizza Hut and - wait for it - Taco Bell.