$25 billion worth of food is thrown out by restaurants across the U.S. After visiting a local restaurant on campus at closing, Vicky’s Bakery, we saw dozens of perfectly good pastries being tossed out because they were leftover. We thought of how much money do these restaurants lose from this and how students (who tend to be on a budget) could purchase these at a discounted price. We also connected the thrown out food being a wasted opportunity to feed a hungry, homeless person. Finally, landfills are dominated by food waste that produces methane as it rots, a gas 25x more harmful to our environment than CO2 and we knew that all of these can be solved if we can connect the supply and demand in a simple, seamless way.
What it does
MunchSquad is a mobile app where restaurants could sell their leftover food to college students at a discounted price, and donate the rest to homeless shelters. Using a real-time marketplace for leftover food, restaurants can show what extra food they have and how much they’re willing to discount it in order to try bringing in extra cash rather than just throwing it away. Students would have access to viewing all the discounted menu items on campus allowing them to select cheaper food quicker and smarter than before. Our partnership with homeless shelters would allow for what’s left of leftovers to be picked up by them so that we implement a zero-waste community. Basically, companies make money while students and homeless shelters save money, and while the Earth gets cleaner.
Challenges we ran into
Market validation was capped to 4 restaurants because a lot of our target market restaurants are closed on weekends.
What's next for MunchSquad
We would like to continue to onboard local restaurants and partner up with more charities/shelters.