Apeel Sciences, a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer and one of TIME magazine's 50 Genius Companies, appointed Taylor Sokol as the company’s director of foodservice. Sokol will establish and manage relationships with both commercial and non-commercial foodservice customers, including distributors, foodservice management companies, independent restaurants and wholesalers. By shaping Apeel’s strategy and partnering in the foodservice channel, Sokol will play an integral role in furthering the company’s growth on a global scale.
Food waste is one of the leading contributors to climate change, and more than 80 percent of it occurs downstream within retail and foodservice establishments. Following its rapid expansion over the last year, propelled by the expansion of avocado distribution and new produce categories with Kroger, and landing on European retail shelves at Edeka in Germany and Salling Group in Denmark, Apeel is now extending its plant-derived food-waste fighting solution beyond retail into the foodservice channel.
"Apeel is continuing to unlock value in new channels and areas of the fresh food supply chain,” said James Rogers, chief executive officer of Apeel Sciences. “Apeel for foodservice will help operators and distributors maintain quality, reduce shrink and increase servings per case, while enabling growers to sell the whole tree.”
“Apeel is at the forefront of addressing food waste as one of the biggest problems we face as a planet,” said Sokol. “It’s an exciting time to join as we help foodservice distributors and operators reduce waste while enabling them to serve consumers delicious food with better quality produce made possible by Apeel.”
Restaurants in the U.S. alone generate an estimated 22 to 33 billion pounds of food waste each year, and non-commercial institutions, including schools, hotels and hospitals generate an additional 7 to 11 billion pounds per year. While much of this is caused by over-prepared food, Apeel can provide foodservice operators with more time to serve produce at its peak condition, while reducing overall waste and increasing margins. As more high-volume operators look to increase their fresh fruit and vegetable offerings, Apeel can also address the challenges of spoilage during supply chain adjustments.
Prior to joining Apeel, Sokol provided strategic foodservice guidance for plant-forward start-up CAULIPOWER, and over the last decade served in sales and market development roles at public and private food companies, including Ocean Hugger Foods, J.R. Simplot Co., Flagship Food Group and Sysco.