Tripp Wall on why provenance is key and time kills food

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A check in interview with another co-founder of Trailhead Capital Tripp Wall. Hear from Tripp how provenance is key to transparency in the food system. We also discuss how time kills food, the regenerative soil amendments that are off ramps from extractive agriculture and, finally, how we need to be able to go long on investments.

LISTEN TO THE CONVERSATION ON:

What is the role of Trailhead in regeneration? Is there any movement in the consumer demands? What are amendments and why is there a need for them? What is provenance and why does it matter? How does time kill food?

The Supply Chain Deconstruction

We are in need of supply chain deconstruction where the value of supply could ultimately go to two entities- to the stewards of the land (farmers) and to the accessibility of high-quality food for all. The food supply human health is interconnected with soil. Hence, in order to improve the planet’s human health, we should start with soil. If grocery chains can start getting supplies from vertical, regenerative farms, the people as well as the environment can be healthier and the farmers could earn their wages.

“We really want to champion those folks, men and women, who stay on the land and steward the land with the right methodologies.” – Tripp Wall 

How Provenance Equates Transparency

Time kills food—the more processed the food is, the less quality it has. This is why Trailhead puts high prominence in provenance. Our food system (the active compounds, phytonutrients, minerals, etc.) should be more transparent to consumers. They believe that people should be asking more about the origins of the food they put on their tables. More than anything, people should have more options for goods with higher nutrient density. 

“I wanted to give consumers more choice with good stuff and allow them to understand the nutrient density and then the provenance of where this stuff came from.” – Tripp Wall 

The Wonders of Amendments 

In a good environment, plants can pretty much take care of themselves. They don’t need any synthetic chemicals or even the organic ones. However, to push the process into a “perfect spot”  that would provide the best results, we recur to amendments. To spearhead the most successful amendments, Trailhead partners with scientists (Rodale Institute, Dr. Doug Cameron, etc.) and tech investors (Seth Levine, etc,) in the industry. 

“Coming from this large extractive, chemical-based agricultural system, we believe that there are some off ramps, and we think of these amendments as off ramps to get to the perfect spot.” – Tripp Wall 

The Metabolic Genomic Piece 

We know so little about small molecules in soil. With this, Trailhead is currently exploring “metabolic genomics”, a crop protection derived from signalling molecules in the soil biome. It’s still in the process of discovery and Trailhead works with academic institutions to develop metabolic genomics further. Metabolic genomics may be a promising breakthrough as it expects to reduce farming costs by 5 times, but produce the same outcomes. 

“It’s very cost effective and uses basically the same hardware infrastructure that you’re using now. It’s very compatible for the steward.” – Tripp Wall 

Other Points Discussed: 

Koen and Tripp also talked about: 

  • how we should focus more on any water forms;
  • how transparency in the food system validates premium pricing;
  • how liquidity can be a disservice to the investor;
  • how investors need to think through their real liquidity needs and go long with them; and
  • how we should focus on regenerative aquaculture as well. 

To know more about Tripp Wall and Trailhead Capital, download and listen to this episode. 

Links:

Interviews:

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The above references an opinion and is for information and educational purposes only. It is not intended to be investment advice. Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.

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