Have you ever thought about what happens to unused food at restaurants and stores at the end of the day? Most food is thrown away! In fact, approximately one-third of food produced for human consumption is wasted globally each year. The US alone has a yearly estimate of 125 to 160 billion pounds of food waste, while nearly 26 million Americans say they don’t have enough to eat. There is sufficient food available to provide for people in need, but the right distribution system hasn’t been developed yet. So now, the global market of hungry people is up for grabs and social innovation is leading the way to maximizing profit and impact simultaneously.
One notable company is Too Good To Go. The Too Good To Go app was founded in Copenhagen in 2015 to allow restaurants, bakeries, supermarkets, etc. to connect with customers and let them buy excess food at lower prices than usual. Discounted prices and cheaper goods aren't the only treats though as the only menu option on the app's interface is a surprise food bag, filled with a diverse, random assortment of goods from the selected vendor. The app seeks to solve food waste in a time-sensitive fashion and so, while the mystery food bag is certainly an attractive marketing tactic, it actually serves a higher purpose. The randomness of the menu ensures that all leftover goods from a day's sales are sold off through the app. This is far more efficient than listing the individual items, which vary day by day, and relying on consumer interest to sell off all leftovers. Additionally, the benefits of having repeat customers and higher value than cost per bag only adds to Too Good To Go's profitability.
This concept not only makes food more accessible for people with limited resources but also saves tons of fresh food that would otherwise go to the landfill. This is a win-win-win situation for the consumer, the food, and the environment.
The company seeks to inspire and empower individuals around the world to take action against food waste, and it is doing it successfully. The concept seems to be very popular among users as Too Good To Go is operating in more than 11 countries in Europe with plans to expand worldwide. The app has also reached one of the biggest cities in the world, New York City, and more growth is on the way to share with more people the opportunity to reduce food waste.
In NYC, the cost of a bag of food sold by the app is around $5, with it’s value ranging up to $20. A time window is presented, about 30 minutes, during which the food can be picked up. Depending on the business, it can be anytime during the day.
This idea brings together business and people who want to take the next step in reducing food waste. The app’s popularity is constantly increasing. Everyone from students to businessmen to the elderly can join the app and actively fight food waste.
These are the types of ventures we at CAЯBON believe the world needs more of. We’re a holdings company that invests in social empowerment-focused businesses replicated by our novel "CAЯBON Copy" scaling model. Our work focuses as much on management and growth as it does on investment which is why our business model is structured as a holdings company rather than a traditional fund. We aim to invest in emerging technologies but a larger untapped market that we consider profitable is actually the pool of existing technologies and IoTs that are already solving big challenges—just like Too Good To Go. With our guidance, expertise, and capital, we hope to scale and grow these companies for a worldwide audience. Isolated technologies serve little purpose in an increasingly globalizing economy—therefore, the leading innovations of the future must be sustainable, ethical, and built for a truly global market to define success.