$120 million for "juice as a platform" https://t.co/y2ntS2bTFp
— Christopher Mims (@mims) March 31, 2016
When the ancient appetite for hummingbird-tongue pie and pearls dissolved in vinegar filters through childhood memories of Captain Picard demanding “Tea. Earl Grey. Hot.”… From the NYTimes article:
… Is it a juice-ordering app? Is it just another kitchen-counter contraption? Or is it a 111,000-square-foot food processing factory, staffed by dozens of hourly workers, washing and slicing up fruits and vegetables in Los Angeles?
It is all of these things. “It’s the most complicated business that I’ve ever funded,” said David Krane, a partner at GV, formerly Google Ventures. “It’s software. It’s consumer electronics. It’s produce and packaging.”
Many of the tycoons who inhabit Silicon Valley are obsessed with health and longevity while harboring the conviction that technology can improve anything, even one of nature’s most elementary foodstuffs — in this case, juice. And they believe that niche trends, if properly disrupted, can become billion-dollar markets. Juicero is the latest expression of these techno-utopian impulses…
The machine itself is a white plastic slab roughly the size of a food processor. To get some juice, you insert a pouch that resembles an IV bag and press a button. A couple of minutes later, a thin stream of vividly colored liquid squirts into a glass.
For health nuts willing to pay a premium, Juicero promises the platonic ideal of juice. Plus, the machine never needs to be cleaned.
But getting from farm to glass involves a daunting mix of hardware, code and food processing. The arrangement relies on a smartphone app, always-on Wi-Fi, QR codes, high-tech packaging and an army of workers slicing fruits and vegetables in very particular ways…
How long after it hits the market will it take for some tv comedian to bait C-list celebrities with a fake Juicero dispensing doses of V8?
For that matter, how long before Ronco comes out with a $19.95 ‘Youceroo’ that sits on your kitchen counter and dispenses V8, Welsh grape juice, or Motts from ‘convenient storage paks’?