From new technologies tracking real time food wastage in Thailand to mobile applications showing farmers and traders the fastest route to market in Africa, anti-food waste apps are being increasingly used by a wide range of consumers across the globe.
Among them, Too Good To Go, an app that connects restaurants and consumers and helps ensure surplus food doesn’t go to waste. It was launched as a website at the end of 2015 by founders Chris Wilson and Jamie Crummie. Today, after only 18 months of activity, the initial platform has evolved into a mobile app and, from the initial launch in Denmark, it has now spread to five other countries – UK, France, Norway, Switzerland and Germany.
Despite still being so young, the project can already count on an impressive list of store partners (from YO! SUSHI to Mitchell & Butlers, to name a few) and has over 2 million users. Most importantly, since its launch Too Good To Go has achieved the noteworthy goal of rescuing a total of 1.8 million meals, an average of 10,000 meals a day.
We have spoken with Jamie Crummie, one of the people behind the success of Too Good To Go, to find out more.
How did it all start?
It started back in 2015 as a website, with Jamie and Chris looking to address the crazy problem of food waste that we have here in the UK. After launching the site and getting going, they came across a group of like-minded people based in Denmark, who were trying to address the same issue in Scandinavia. They soon decided to join forces and launched the app as we know it today.
It was founded with a mission to place the lost value back onto food as something that should be eaten and not thrown away.
How did you come up with the idea to develop the app?
Too Good To Go came about as a solution to tackling food waste in the hospitality industry. In the past 18 months, it has developed into so much more than that: the app now exists as a platform to significantly reduce food waste in all forms, from supermarkets to hotels to independent market stalls and everything in between.
Food is food – our most valuable resource of energy – and not a mere consumer commodity.
It was founded with a mission to place the lost value back onto food as something that should be eaten and not thrown away. It’s a response to the harrowing fact that, as a global society, we carelessly throw away over one-third of the food we produce. A quarter of the planet’s agricultural land is used to produce food that would otherwise be wasted, and if food waste were a country it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases. What’s more, we’re trying to highlight that food is food – our most valuable resource of energy – and not a mere consumer commodity.
How many people are there behind the success of the app?
We have an awesome team with just over 50 of us internationally, ranging from a tech team to our amazing restaurant hunters, and plenty of awesome people in between. We all share a burning passion to make our world a better place and leave our mark on sustainability and food waste.
What are your plans for the future?
We’re currently focusing on tackling restaurant food wastage in the UK. However, we are getting emails every day from people as far out as Brazil and Singapore asking to bring Too Good To Go to them – who knows what the future has in store!
We have saved the equivalent of 2,160,000 kg of CO2 emissions, the same as the emissions of 5.3 million car miles.
What’s your contribution to tackling food waste?
Globally, we have saved over 1.8 million meals, the equivalent of 2,160,000 kg of CO2 emissions. That’s the same as the emissions of 5.3 million car miles. We’re excited to keep on scaling our positive impact worldwide.