The latest Los Angeles startup news, including funding, hiring, launches and more.

After a year and a half of the pandemic, the robots have arrived—at least in restaurants.

A new report from market research firm Global Industry Analysts (GIA) found that the global food automation market grew to $9.7 billion in 2020, spurred in part by a desire to offer customers contactless service. The GIA researchers projected the market would swell to $13.6 billion by 2026.

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The beauty and fashion industry isn't as skinny and white as it once was. Makeup for darker skin tones are more widely available, shapes are changing and so are perceptions. This year, Leyna Bloom graced the cover of Sports Illustrated. She's a trans woman of color. But sometimes, it can all feel a bit inauthentic.

That's how Brittany Chavez, a 30-year-old whose parents hailed from Nicaragua and Guatemala felt when she founded Shop Latinx. Her lifestyle and makeup ecommerce site debuted last October as home for Latinx and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) brands
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The Grounded Foods founders Veronica Fil and chef Shaun Quade were obsessed with making vegan cheese that "didn't taste like crap."

The couple aren't vegans or even vegetarians but Quade, who once guest judged the TV competition show Masterchef, had been trying to perfect imitation Camembert, Gruyere and Roquefort while the executive chef at the Australian upscale foraging restaurant Lûmé.

For more than a year he tweaked his recipe serving his clients "cheese" plates made from hemp. When his wife, Fil found out she thought he was onto something. After all, Velveeta is a household name, so why couldn't other faux cheeses be?

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