Free app is helping local businesses keep food waste out of the trash

Too Good To Go launched its app in Calgary this week

By Krista Sylvester | March 25, 2022 |5:00 am

There’s a new food app in town and it’s going to cut down on the food waste in the city. 

Already helping cut down on food waste in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, and Quebec City, Too Good To Go has now launched in Calgary as its fifth Canadian city. 

The world’s leading anti-food waste app is already live in 17 countries across the world and since entering Canada in 2021, the app has helped more than 2,000 businesses save an average of 2,000 meals per day from going to waste. 

In the seven months since launching, Too Good To Go has saved a total of 275,000 meals — and Too Good to Go country manager Sam Kashani says Calgary’s addition will add to that number exponentially. 

“As we continue to expand throughout the country it’s important to us to ensure our mission is empowering local businesses and consumers to fight food waste,” Kashani says. 

Connecting consumers with businesses to cut down on food waste 

The app, which is free to download, connects businesses who have surplus food at the end of the day with consumers who purchase Surprise Bags of that food at one-third the retail cost. 

Businesses recoup lost revenue they would otherwise incur by throwing out perfectly good food, consumers get to eat great food and try out new local spots, and everyone is helping to lessen the impact of food waste on the planet. 

“We strive to provide a solution that is easy for companies to use and fun for customers to work into their daily routine,” Kashani says, adding consumers can open the app and see which businesses have extra food. 

“It truly is a win-win-win because the users get awesome value and they get to discover new neighbourhood stores. The stores win because they ultimately drive incremental revenue. And more importantly, they’re making a social impact because they’re not throwing out perfectly healthy and edible food.”

It’s already a big hit in Calgary — and it just launched a day ago 

The local response has already exceeded expectations with over 110 Calgary restaurants already on board even though it just launched, Kashani says. 

Renowned local favourites such as Lina’s Italian Market, Amaranth, Grocers, Hoopla Doughnuts, and Chunk’d Cookies are just a few of the local partners already signed on.  

“It’s exciting, and it’s been our fastest ramp up yet of all the Canadian cities,” he says, adding they’ve acquired those partners in just a couple of weeks. 

“Our ambition in Canada is to be a national player and provide a platform anywhere that there is a surplus. We’re on a pretty rapid expansion coast to coast and Calgary was a natural step for us to launch.”

Kashani says Calgary businesses are embracing the fight to end food waste.

“Consumers have already given us positive encouragement by sharing their Surprise Bag contents and helping expand our message throughout the city.” 

Why it’s needed now more than ever 

Kashani says the past two years have exacerbated the already drastic food waste problem with 58% of food that is perfectly good to eat going to waste each year in Canada. 

“We know that is happening across the value chain; it happens in restaurants, it happens at home, it happens to manufacturers, it happens in transportation. Our platform focuses on all of that,” he explains. 

Food waste occurs everywhere from the home to grocery stores; which is why Too Good To Go partners with a vast list of food selling businesses from bakeries to restaurants and everything in between and continues to add more partners in every market every day. 

“But the app specifically is an opportunity for businesses to ultimately not waste any surplus food because they open up the shop in the morning, they don’t know exactly what they’re going to have left. And it’s a very difficult task to match supply and demand.” 

The Too Good To Go app is available for iOS download in the Apple App Store and Google Play for Android.

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Krista Sylvester

Managing Editor at Calgary Citizen

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