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Thomas Jonas

Chief Executive Officer

Thomas believes in asking the big questions but also in finding new and different solutions. When a chance encounter on the beach in Hawaii led Thomas to a lab in Montana where he met Mark, he saw infinite possibilities in the tiny microscopic organism. When others often ask why, Thomas’ curiosity drives him to ask, why not and what if? Why not use the nutritional power of Fy to positively impact the environment and disrupt the food industry? What if Fy could feed people today and for generations to come? And as a former officer in the French Air Force, Thomas knows that even the sky is not the limit.
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Dr. Mark Kozubal

Chief Science Officer

Mark loves exploring science to find groundbreaking ways to benefit mankind. True to his curious nature, he journeyed to Yellowstone National Park and later discovered an extremophile microbe in samples taken from the hot springs. This microbe eventually grew to become our nutritional fungi protein, Fy. As a leading expert in extremophile organisms, it’s no surprise that his deep knowledge has led NASA, the National Science Foundation, the USDA, and the EPA to seek him out. When Mark isn’t researching extremophiles, he likes to mountain bike, backcountry ski, and strum guitar.
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Matthew Strongin

Chief Financial Officer

Matthew is passionate about leveraging technology to deliver a sustained impact on the planet and our society. This enthusiasm led him to Nature’s Fynd after working in venture capital and banking. As a venture investor in early-stage companies focused on agriculture and energy, Matthew experienced firsthand the struggles and rewards of commercializing technologies that both challenge convention and create sustainable solutions that disrupt the food industry in a positive way. He enjoys building towards audacious goals using his innovative spirit— just ask him about completely remodeling his home in his spare time.
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Karuna Rawal

Chief Marketing Officer

As a marketer with award-winning international success, Karuna was ready for the challenge of building a purpose-driven brand from the ground up. That brand? Nature’s Fynd. Karuna’s broad experience in launching new food innovations combined with an intentional focus on how we can create a better food system led her to this position. Building on the company’s unique origins, Karuna is crafting a compelling narrative for Nature’s Fynd. And her own enthusiasm for food extends beyond her kitchen to seeking out amazing tasting vegan food. So if you’re in Chicago, ask her to share a favorite recipe or restaurant she last visited for a flawless recommendation.
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Jim Millis

Chief Technology Officer

Jim’s belief is simple: live modestly and leave the world in a better place than you found it. He does this by preparing food from his own garden and through his work at Nature’s Fynd. With over thirty years of working as an entrepreneurial leader and his expertise in fermentation technology, Jim helped create the breakthrough method used to grow our nutritional fungi protein, Fy. This innovative spirit comes from a family of creators. With a woodshop on his family’s farm and an uncle in the business of wood lathes, Jim also loves woodturning to craft stunning bowls from reclaimed wood.
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Press and Media

Nature’s Fynd Adds Food Indus­try Vet­er­ans and Rais­es $45 Mil­lion To Accel­er­ate Its Go-To-Mar­ket Strategy

Lead­ers from ADM, Cargill, Bel Brands USA, and KIND Snacks join the Nature’s Fynd team with the mis­sion to nour­ish peo­ple and nur­ture the plan­et.

CHICA­GO, Decem­ber 8, 2020 — Nature’s Fynd, a food-tech com­pa­ny pro­duc­ing a nutri­tion­al fun­gi pro­tein called Fy™ from a microbe orig­i­nal­ly dis­cov­ered in the geot­her­mal springs of Yel­low­stone, con­tin­ues to grow its team of vet­er­ans from the food indus­try. These lead­ers bring their com­bined 60+ years of expe­ri­ence at some of the world’s most notable food com­pa­nies to help lead the launch of high­ly nutri­tious, deli­cious, and sus­tain­able foods from Nature’s Fynd in 2021.

Baljit Singh Gho­tra joins Nature’s Fynd as the SVP of Food Inno­va­tion from ADM.
Dr. Gho­tra, for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent of Food Research at ADM, spent the past 20+ years build­ing R&D plat­forms to deliv­er an end-to-end food ingre­di­ent devel­op­ment pro­gram and over­see­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing to accel­er­ate inno­va­tion and dri­ve growth. With a Ph.D. degree in grain sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy plus his proven track record, Dr. Gho­tra will lead his team at Nature’s Fynd to devel­op prod­ucts and tech­nolo­gies inspired by nature.

Emi­lie Runac joins Nature’s Fynd as the Direc­tor of Man­u­fac­tur­ing after 16 years at Bel Brands USA.
Ms. Runac most recent­ly man­aged a union plant of over 180 employ­ees, man­u­fac­tur­ing 25 mil­lion pounds of cheese per year. Before that, she led the suc­cess­ful North Amer­i­can launch of Mini Baby­bel Cheese & Crack­ers, earn­ing the Best New Snack Pack in the 2019 Best Prod­uct Awards. At Nature’s Fynd, Ms. Runac will lever­age her pas­sion for inno­va­tion, con­tin­u­ous improve­ment, and sus­tain­abil­i­ty to lead her team across the fin­ish line with the first prod­uct launch at Nature’s Fynd.

Pat Dalug­dug joins Nature’s Fynd as the Direc­tor of Sales from KIND Snacks.
Mr. Dalug­dug brings a breadth of sales expe­ri­ence across mul­ti­ple inno­va­tors in the food indus­try, includ­ing KIND Snacks, Bul­let­proof, and Danone North Amer­i­ca. His inquis­i­tive thought and opti­mism align with the val­ues of Nature’s Fynd, and Mr. Dalugdug’s deep exper­tise in inno­v­a­tive foods will enable him to build strong part­ner­ships with key retail­ers across chan­nels.

Tom Frey joins Nature’s Fynd as the Direc­tor of Project Engi­neer­ing. Mr. Frey spent 16 years at Cargill, most recent­ly as an Engi­neer­ing Man­ag­er. He’s a renowned expert in lead­ing suc­cess­ful design and imple­men­ta­tions of fer­men­ta­tion tech­nolo­gies for food prod­ucts. At Nature’s Fynd, Mr. Frey will use his exten­sive fer­men­ta­tion expe­ri­ence to con­tin­ue scal­ing pro­duc­tion of Fy for com­mer­cial launch.

In addi­tion to hir­ing this excep­tion­al group of new lead­ers, Nature’s Fynd raised $45 mil­lion of addi­tion­al ven­ture debt and equip­ment financ­ing com­mit­ments from Oxford Finance and Trin­i­ty Cap­i­tal. These part­ner­ships pro­vide Nature’s Fynd with the flex­i­bil­i­ty to accel­er­ate go-to-mar­ket strate­gies, intro­duce more prod­uct offer­ings, and ensure opti­mal cap­i­tal effi­cien­cy for cap­i­tal expen­di­ture pur­chas­es.

Today, we’ve announced the hir­ing of sev­er­al top food indus­try experts who will sig­nif­i­cant­ly advance the com­mer­cial suc­cess of our prod­ucts. We’re at a piv­otal moment where chang­ing the way we all eat to take bet­ter care of our health and to care for our plan­et is cru­cial. Using Fy, our nutri­tion­al fun­gi pro­tein, we’ve made foods that con­tain a com­plete pro­tein and have an extreme­ly low car­bon foot­print,”
said Co-founder and CEO Thomas Jonas. Now Nature’s Fynd needs to bring these deli­cious foods to mar­ket so we can all be part of the solu­tion to cli­mate change.”

About Nature’s Fynd

Nature’s Fynd is a Chi­ca­­go-based food-tech com­pa­ny cre­at­ing ver­sa­tile alter­na­tive pro­teins to nour­ish the world’s grow­ing pop­u­la­tion while nur­tur­ing the plan­et. Born out of research con­duct­ed for NASA on microbes in Yel­low­stone Nation­al Park, the company’s break­through tech­nol­o­gy pro­duces Fy ™. Fy is a new-to-the-world, nutri­tion­al fun­gi pro­tein that only uses a frac­tion of the resources required by tra­di­tion­al agri­cul­ture. The com­pa­ny has raised over $150 mil­lion in equi­ty and debt financ­ing to date. For more infor­ma­tion, vis­it www​.natures​fynd​.com.

Con­tact Deirdre O’Donoghue at deirdre@​naturesfynd.​com for press inquiries.