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Freshly: Innovation in the Food Industry


Eat healthy meals every day, and you will feel better than just OK!

Everyone deserves to eat healthy meals, but school, work, kids, and other daily distractions make things harder and get in the way. There used to be a shortage of businesses ready to solve this problem and provide a perfect combination of convenience and deliciousness.

Michael Wystrach and Carter Comstock knew exactly what busy people wanted when they founded Freshly in New York in 2012.

Freshly is a private company that delivers fully prepared meals to its customers throughout the United States. The menu of this service consists of wide-ranging single-serve dishes, such as high-protein, low-carb options to match dairy-free, gluten-free, paleo, and keto diets.

With the mission to revolutionize the US food industry, Freshly has shown the world that eating healthy isn’t so hard. If you are interested in learning more about how this duo won over hundreds of customers, keep reading!

Education Works Best With Inspiration

Michael was born and raised in Southern Arizona in a ranching family that owned a restaurant. Since Michael was young, he was begging his parents to allow him to work, so when he was 8, his wish came true. He started working in their restaurant, saving his money for college. In 1998, he joined the University of Arizona, and in 2002, he received a Bachelor of Science in Finance.

Soon after Michael graduated, he honed his entrepreneurial skills by working in various businesses and branches. He was working hard and living a busy life, and he didn’t eat as much healthy food as necessary.

But this changed when he heard the wise words of a family friend who told him that health is the real wealth.

The man that changed the way Michael saw the world is Carter Comstock’s father, who helped Michael’s family prepare healthy food in their restaurant.

Carter was born in the United States of America. His father, Dr. Frank, paid special attention to people’s health and taught Carter to be careful what he ate. After finishing high school, Carter entered the Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona and got a bachelor of Business Management.

Although Carter started his career in Automatic Data Processing Company, he decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and focus on providing healthy food freshly delivered to the people in the US. So, he combined his knowledge, experience, and inspiration from his father and visualized his future job.

Carter and Michael already knew each other and had experience in the business sector. They shared their idea about a fresh food delivery service and were ready to turn their crazy idea into a reality. So, with just a small amount of cash and a few credit cards, Carter and Michael founded Freshly in 2012.

Small Steps, Huge Success

The beginning was tough. Michael and Carter worked for 20 hours a day. They built a team of a few people and kept growing their business. The best part is that Michael and Carter believed in what Freshly could become and were willing to do everything to achieve that.

They moved to Phoenix, rented a cheap apartment, and ate eggs and beans as they used all their money to launch Freshly. Thanks to their delicious meals and excellent ideas, the number of people who used their services slowly began to grow.

The company started with 15 employees, but in 2015, that number increased significantly. Freshly began to include new products in their menu, covering customers who follow a special diet, such as keto and paleo.

Prepared Meal Delivery Service for Good Health

Busy people were tired of consuming frozen food and fell in love with fresh, ready-to-eat, Freshly meals. Gradually but surely, the company became a real sensation, and the number of subscribers grew significantly.

The COVID-19 pandemic changed the world. Michael and Carter saw this as a huge opportunity to help needy families, so they donated prepared foods worth $500,000. This strategy increased yearly sales, and in 2020, the duo expanded Freshly to B2B meal delivery.

Freshly joined the vast Nestlé family in October 2020 in a shared commitment to follow their mission to promote healthy eating. Boosted by this collaboration, the company continued to work harder on an independent level; all the while, its tasty meals and subscription pricing remained untouched.

Carter believed the company needed fresh energy and launched the FreshlyFit menu that comprised FreshlyFit meals to meet the active lifestyles and high protein, low-carb diets. All these features made Freshly meal delivery a giant in the food industry and opened a sizable production facility in Austell, Georgia.

Hard Roads Lead to Beautiful Destinations

There are various food delivery services in the US, including Taco Bell, Delivery Hero, and Instacart. What makes Freshly different from its competitors is that they offer non-processed food ready to be served on the table.

But, is Freshly healthy?

Freshly meal delivery is a popular weekly subscription service that delivers fully prepared healthy meals directly to your doorstep.

Their weekly menu contains 30 different flavorful meals and combinations made with 100% natural ingredients prepared by highly experienced chefs. None of their preparations contain artificial flavors, hydrogenated oils, artificial preservatives, refined sugars, sweeteners, and colors. Plus, they come with free shipping.

With about 600 employees and offices in Tempe, Savage, and New York, the Freshly meals menu has entrées and delicious breakfasts. Their meals contain dairy products, fish, turkey, beef, chicken, pork, eggs, tree nuts, and shellfish, among other healthy ingredients.

To make things easier for customers Freshly provides an application that allows users to manage their dietary preferences.

Moreover, the company is quite original regarding food packing. The company uses innovative packaging technology so that all their meals maintain freshness during transportation. To top everything off, the company backs each order with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Freshly IPO

Freshly has raised $110 million in total over 5 rounds, and in 2020 its valuation was $950 million. Ten investors were in the funding game, with White Star Capital and Monkfish Equity being the most recent ones.

The Seed Rounds in 2013 and 2015 raised around $2 million, but the round Series A round in 2015 climbed to $7 million. Following this trend, Freshly raised $21 million in the funding round in 2016, led by Insight Venture Partners.

The most successful funding round was in 2017 and was led by Nestlé. Named Series C round, that round raised $70 million and created new opportunities for Freshly, adding Nestlé’s Food Division President for the USA to the company’s board. This motivated Michael and Carter to keep searching for great investors who would become Freshly partners and help them come up with better ideas to aid everyone.

Freshly: What Does the Future Hold?

Freshly will continue competing against itself, first and foremost, as well as its current competition on the market. Carter and Michael managed to start and grow the company with their own finances, so their desire to achieve even more is fueled each day with a glance at their successful past.

The mega-popular Freshly will keep adding new delicious meals to its menu and will continue to attract new subscribers with its quality. Michael, Carter, and their team are set on working as a standalone business, maintaining their strict standards and full control of Freshly products.

While they remain committed to what makes Freshly a brand, Michael and Carter may add some exciting changes. Interesting variety is on the way, coupled with grand plans for tripling the number of weekly meals and subscribers to enjoy a fresh(ly) meal!