Thursday, July 25, 2024

New app in town aims to end food waste while helping feed Victorians on a budget


A company which was founded in Copenhagen, Denmark has now landed in Victoria and its mission is simple: to take down food waste by helping folks get cheap access to good food.

Have you ever wondered what happens to a bakery’s leftover donuts at the end of a day? 

Well, sometimes those baked goods will end up being donated or handed out on the street by an employee with a conscience, but more often than not, that food ends up in the trash and that is a sad fate for that food and the people who could have eaten it.

Too Good To Go was established on the idea that this vicious cycle offers nothing to society except full landfills and empty stomachs. 

“Every single person can play a part,” said Sarah Soteroff, Canadian spokesperson for Too Good To Go. “Our goal is a planet without food waste and we know that we can achieve it.”

“What it requires is the participation of everybody. Every food selling business can be on the app and every person with a smartphone can save.”

According to them, more than 50% of food produced in Canada is wasted, which is the equivalent of approximately $1.2 trillion being thrown in the garbage.

Meanwhile, food prices have been increasing at an unprecedented rate over the last year as inflation was wreaking havoc on hungry consumers’ bank accounts.

Too Good To Go connects these two problems as a way to work towards a solution for both. 

The Too Good To Go app launched in Victoria on May 4th and already has 60 locations consumers can get some food on a budget from. 

Discovery Café, Yonni’s Doughnuts, 2% Jazz Coffee and 7-Eleven are just some of the local spots people can get food from for way less than their normal prices. 7-Eleven alone has 12 locations people can grab a  bag from. 

Vendors from the app sell ‘bags’, some are surprise bags and some are more specific, although you never know exactly what you’ll get until you get it. 

“Everything that’s sold on the app is what would have been sold in-store,” said Soteroff.

“We rely on our vendors to ensure consistency of food quality, that nothing has been passed the best-before date or wouldn’t be sold in store.”

“Everything the consumer receives will be one-third of the retail price so you’re receiving a ton more food than what you would be paying for outright.”

On the vendor side of the operation, all the workers have to do is put together ‘surprise bags’ of food that would otherwise go to waste, put them up on the app and wait until folks come to pick them up. They believe they can reduce this number.

Victorians can pick up milk, bread and other essential groceries from 7-Eleven for just $4.99 — one third of the regular price.

Vendors also get to feel good by taking part because they aren’t contributing so much to the Hartland Landfill. 

Too Good To Go is a certified ‘B Corp’, which means they must meet the highest levels of verified performance, accountability and transparency on matters of how they run their business and how they treat employees.

“We’re really, really proud to be a B Corp,” said Soteroff. “It means we have to be held to the highest sustainability standards, so we submit all of our information to the B Corp organization.”

“We firmly believe that we can lower our greenhouse gas emissions, we can lower our CO2 and what we’ve been doing in Canada, we currently have offset the emissions of all our staff and globally, we continue to meet those standards.”

The Too Good To Go app can be downloaded on any smartphone through the Apple Store of Google Play.

Curtis Blandy

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