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New app ‘Too Good to Go’ reduces food waste in NYC and saves money

SnapwireSnaps | Pixabay

A new app-based service in New York City reduces food waste from grocery stores, restaurants and bakeries by allowing customers to purchase leftovers at a reduced price.

The app, Too Good to Go, officially launched in the United States for the first time in New York City. The first annual International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste was held on Sept. 29 and designed by the United Nations General Assembly to bring awareness to the global problem of food waste, as well as its impact on climate change.

Typically, a store’s leftovers are thrown away at the end of the day. Too Good to Go combats this by offering a variety of locations, cuisines and pickup times from different eateries based on their daily prepared meals for customers to choose from.

Too Good to Go originally launched in Denmark and has made its way to 14 European countries, including the United Kingdom, Spain, France and Italy.

A survey conducted by Too Good to Go found that while 86%of the city-area residents want to waste less food, 88%do not realize the connection between food waste and climate change. “Each year, 1/3 of food produced in the world goes to waste, and it is responsible for 8% of all greenhouse gas emissions,” according to the app’s website.

Too Good to Go will eventually have 1,000 partners in all five boroughs according to the Wall Street Journal.

“New York City is ready for it. We New Yorkers are pioneers — we love to be the first ones to do anything,” said Gaeleen Quinn, the company’s East Coast director.

Users can simply log in, pay and retrieve their order from their provider. Most options cost a third or less of the menu price and Too Good to Go pockets a significantly smaller amount of money per purchase. While many New Yorkers will enjoy saving money, reducing food waste is the app’s primary goal.

New Yorkers — whether it be at home or in the office — waste 1.3 million tons of food each year, according to Too Good to Go.

By partnering with businesses and offering a new method of service, Too Good to Go incentivizes businesses to join the fight against food waste.

Scott Walker, owner of Highline Pizzeria in Manhattan, told the Wall Street Journal that predicting and estimating demand for pizza during the pandemic has been difficult to do, which is why he ended up with several pies of perfectly good pizza that would be thrown in the trash.

With Too Good to Go, Walker can now make the most out of his leftover pies by offering hourly deals, such as three slices of pizza for $4.99, and Too Good to Go will only take $1.39 from his sale. Although this is significantly less than his normal prices, every purchase of leftover food will ultimately add up, contributing to the overall reduction in food waste.

If Walker chooses to commit to Too Good to Go by selling five orders a night, he would make an additional $5,800 in comparison to the $0 he would have made otherwise.

“It’s found money,” Walker said. “It’s good for the community, and good for me.”

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