Every year, we as a society discard approximately 1.3 billion metric tonnes of food, which is roughly a third of the world’s annual production.
Most of that food ends up sitting in landfills, where it releases methane, a gas that’s 30 times more powerful than carbon.
Unfortunately, without major changes, the food waste problem will only get worse. Especially with the world’s population expected to grow from 7.6 billion to 9.8 billion by 2050, naturally, this means the amount of food waste (and the need for more food) will also increase, leading to further food insecurity.
If you’re looking to save money and help the environment by cutting down on food waste, there’s an app for that. Here are some of our favourite apps that let you do good with just a few taps. Let’s take a closer look at 7 fantastic food waste apps that will help you reduce potential food waste.
Kitche is a great multi-purpose app for food waste prevention. Never worry about having too much or too little food at home again, all you need is a quick photo of your grocery shopping receipt, and Kitche will help you track the food you have and ensure that you never buy what you don’t need.
The app is also catered specifically to you, recommending thousands of recipes based on your dietary habits and what you have available in your house, making it ideal for those of us who feel uninspired in our cooking and are unsure what to make.
Kitche has been featured previously on PostHarvest’s “Let’s Talk Farm to Fork” podcast, which you can view here.
2. Misfits Market
Location: 44 US States
Misfits Market is a US-based app that was created to give unique-looking food a home.
Misfits Market mission is simple: give the consumer high-quality organic food while breaking the cycle of food waste.
The company works directly with farmers and food producers to discover inefficiencies in the food system and sell food that would otherwise go to waste. Misfits Market helps connect farmers directly to consumers, selling their products for up to 40% off grocery store prices and delivering them right to your door.
This app is free to join and has an average savings of $25.17 per week for high-quality grocery items. This provides people with affordable access to healthy food as well as cuts down on food waste—it rescues the “misfit” produce that would have been tossed. You can choose from snacks, meat, seafood, fruit, vegetables, dairy, and eggs.
Location: UK and Spain
Described as the “Tinder to fight food waste,” Olio connects neighbours to pass around excess food that might have instead gone into the trash. Whether you bought too much in the grocery store or changed your mind, you can simply snap a photo and see if any of those around you would like the items instead. This brings borrowing a cup of sugar to a whole new level!
People are free to share or pick up anything, from unsold food or produce that’s on its expiration date from a local store to leftover event catering supplies or excess food that won’t get eaten before a holiday. Olio also partners with catering, hospitality, and retail businesses to pick up surplus food 24/7 and donate food items to the local community.
Encourage your neighbours to download the platform so you and other community members can post food they no longer want.
Olio is keen to highlight how easy it is to dismiss food waste as a problem caused by supermarkets and farming. But when more than 50% of food waste happens in our homes, and institutional change is very slow, there’s a great opportunity for us to spark change with our daily actions.
This app is a great way to connect with your community, make friends, and prevent food waste in the process.
4. Too Good To Go
Location: Denmark and New York (currently)
Like those books wrapped in brown paper for a surprise read or blind dates, Too Good To Go is an app with an extensive listing of restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and grocery stores that sell unsold food in what are called “magic bags.” Buyers not only get discounted food but also the fun of finding out what’s in their bag.
These bags range from $4 to $6, significantly lower than your typical dine-in experience. Too Good To Go is a Certified B Corporation that has saved over 70 million meals worldwide and has partnered with over 87,000 local food businesses.
They also run a campaign that teaches how to “Look, Smell, Taste” food before tossing it out. Too Good To Go has worked with over 500 schools and universities through events, lectures, and research to improve everyone’s education about food waste. Their website is packed with handy and well-researched resources for all age groups.
You can order food directly through the app, pick it up, and pay a fraction of the price! This saves you money and is a great way to prevent food waste.
Eliminate food waste with NoWaste! This powerful app allows you to effortlessly monitor the expiry dates of items in your pantry and refrigerator, making sure nothing gets thrown away unnecessarily.
Easily enter each product’s expiration date and activate notifications that notify when something is about to go bad- guaranteeing a smarter, more sustainable grocery experience.
NoWaste also boasts a social media community where you can share your food waste stats to help keep you (and everyone else on the app) accountable.
It is such a simple yet effective way to help consumers stay on top of what is in their fridges.
6. Food for All
Location: Boston & New York (200+ restaurants)
Much like some of the other apps on this list, the Food for All app allows restaurants to connect with customers and offer food that would otherwise be thrown away.
The discounts are often up to 80%, and you can purchase the meals one hour before the restaurants close. Download the app and enter your location to see participating stores near you. The app also allows you to donate food to those in need.
7. Imperfect Foods
Location: 41 US states
Imperfect Foods is devoted to saving surplus food and fresh food items that would otherwise be discarded due to appearance. This service provides budget-friendly groceries delivered directly to your door, giving visually imperfect produce and leftover food a chance at the love they deserve!
When you open your Imperfect Foods box, be prepared to receive some surprise “ugly” produce – goods that would have been discarded due to their imperfections. Yet these same items are sent off with the promise of a home where they will still be embraced as just as nutritious and can provide interesting character for an array of meals.
The food is perfectly edible (and delicious), but the best part is you get to see what’s about to be sent to you before it’s sent and remove the items you don’t want!
A final word on food waste apps
Downloading apps to help reduce food waste is awesome! It can really make a difference; at the end of the day, we all want to make the world a better place, and taking small steps like downloading a food waste app can help you get there.
I hope you found this article useful and even downloaded an app or two from the list, I know there are lots of apps out there that really aid in reducing food waste. If there is one that you frequently use that you didn’t see on the list, please leave a comment down below!
If you learned something new from this article, please feel free to give it some love and share it with your friends and family.