Save money on food with an app to mop up the left­overs

A Swedish startup is giv­ing food re­tail­ers the op­por­tu­nity to avoid waste by of­fer­ing un­sold prod­ucts to cus­tomers at half price, via an app. Florence Der­rick sets out to live off the ser­vice for a week

The Wharf - - Canary Wharf -

In the UK, more than 100,000 tonnes of ed­i­ble food goes to waste ev­ery year. That’s 250 mil­lion meals in the bin. Swedish startup Karma is on a mis­sion to not only save sur­plus grub but of­fer a savvy, busi­ness-minded so­lu­tion to restau­ra­teurs, too.

Hav­ing launched in Stock­holm and mi­grated to Lon­don in Feb­ru­ary, the app al­lows Lon­don­ers to buy high-qual­ity food at a 50% dis­count from more than 400 lo­cal restau­rants and other food re­tail­ers.

Con­sumers use the app to search for or re­ceive push no­ti­fi­ca­tions for sur­plus food through­out the day – cafes and restau­rants gen­er­ally sell food they have not shifted to­wards the end of their break­fast, lunch or din­ner ser­vice – then re­serve it, pay via the app and col­lect within a set time.

And ac­cord­ing to Head of UK Gro­cery St­effie Clement, it’s not just con­sumers (and land­fill sites) that ben­e­fit from the con­cept.

“The thing with Karma is you’re tar­get­ing new cus­tomers,” she says. “Peo­ple who haven’t yet come through the door. And you’re guar­an­tee­ing a sale from them.

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