Excess food wastage across Australia is increasingly prominent especially in residential halls and households with income over $100,000, impacting landfill. SharePantry aims to provide a platform for users to save money through trading their excessive unused groceries with other individuals.
Excess food wastage across Australia is increasingly prominent especially in residential halls with people aged between 18-24 and households with income over $100,000 (OzHarvest 2018), impacting landfill. SharePantry addresses the food wastage issue by providing a platform for users to trade and sell their excessive groceries with other students. As a result, we successfully create value for the excessive unused groceries that would be otherwise disposed. Along with reducing their ecological footprint, it also helps students reduce their cost of living. At the same time, our movement can educate consumers to avoid purchasing excessive groceries, owing to the consumption culture where customers tend to buy more than they need for much better value.
Our survey results have shown that over 67% of 88 respondents create food wastage and 87.5% of them create approximately 1% to 10% of food wastage. 34.1% gives them to others and 43.2% throw food away. 65.9% are interested in solutions for minimising food wastage. A public facebook group for SharePantry has been created. We will be working on creating educational content while social experiments will be conducted through organising SwapFood day in residential halls where students can gather together with their almost-expired unused groceries to swap for other groceries.
At the current stage, first target customers are self-catered university students at ANU and UC, university staff and 21- 35 year old working professionals from interstate. Our goal aligns with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal for sustainable consumption and production patterns. Government and media would be benefited indirectly as our initiative works towards halving Australia's food waste by 2030 (Australian Government 2017). This is aimed for solving the issue of food wastage and reducing living cost specifically on groceries.
There are currently 5 universities across Canberra, which accomodate over 28,000 students. Other than students, there are more than 10000 migrants moving into Canberra from overseas or interstate.
The consumer segments are currently solving the food wastage issue by throwing the excessive food into the bin or share them with friends and housemates.
Consumer segments’ self initiative to share with housemates and friends would cause one of the obstacles to our proposed venture. Our proposed venture, therefore, provides a platform for users to save money through trading their excessive unused groceries with other users nearby. In this way, our proposed venture can help users to reduce living costs economically and food wastage socially.
Besides, Fareshare, Foodbank, OzHarvest and SecondBite are food recovery organisations that divert substantial amount of food from landfill through receiving surplus food from commercial outlets and redistribute it to more than 1000 charities in supporting people in need in Australia. This can be regarded as a secondary competitor as our segments are initially targeting students and locals.
We see the venture growing rapidly once the customers are made aware of the benefits of the platform itself, and the overarching value in reducing wastage. Our aim is to reach, first the student population in Canberra and the working professionals aged 21 - 35 from interstate living in Canberra.
Once the platform has been established with all the universities in Canberra, we plan to expand to other Australian cities, targeting the student population there first.
By then, we expect to expand into other products, such as kitchen utensils, cookware, home decorations etc, staying true to the idea of a shared pantry.
This idea can also potentially help make people more conscientious of food wastage, help them reduce their ecological footprint and also support charity organisations that work towards feeding the underprivileged.
Have you ever bought more groceries than you required? One of the major problems in the world is excessive groceries and the wastage thereof. Food and Agricultural Organisation has estimated the cost of global food waste at 2.6 trillion USD. In NSW alone on average waste per year per household is $1036, and the primary wastage being in fresh foods.
SharePantry addresses the food wastage issue by providing a platform for users to trade and sell their excessive groceries with other users using real time location based features. We aim to help people reduce their ecological footprint, and also help them reduce their cost of living.
We are looking for a mentor who has some prior experience in IT business and is able to guide us through the process, and connect with local businesses and sponsors.
Targeted customers can hear about us through market day on campus, posters around campus. We are also looking into running a campaign for excessive food wastage awareness in Civic center as well to attract more crowd.
Platforms such as Website Landing Page, Facebook Group and emails will be the easiest way for customers to contact us and we are aiming to get someone to be actively in charged of all our platforms in order to give the best experience . Our contact details can also be visibly found on the posters around campus.
SharePantry is a team of four members coming from a diverse background. However, their differences have not stopped them in sharing the same project vision - reducing food wastage, which is vital in realizing and executing the venture.
The first two members come from programming background and will be working on the technical side of the platform including building a web-page, back-end server and mobile application. On the other hand, the another two of members come from financial background. They also have huge connections with the university clubs & societies and student accommodation. These connections proved to be important for marketing events, networking and getting potential partners for more funding. Besidse that, the team members are also keen in learning graphic designs which will be proven useful for future use.
The team has started on customer validation by sending out survey forms and seeking feedback through daily conversations. On the technical side, the team has created a landing web page and a Facebook group to encourage discussion regarding the topic of trading groceries. Besides that, the team has successfully drafted out a layout for the mobile application.
On the financial side, the team has contacted some potential partners for extra funding to run the project
Our team is still looking for someone who has finance and/ or legal background to guide us on budgeting and giving us legal advice on food safety policy.
Send me an email through firstname.lastname@example.org if you have skills above and you are happy to get involved in helping the team !
According to our cost model, it is estimated that we would need $5171.84 for the first 6 months.
In terms of website development, there is a monthly plan of $33 and creating a server backend needs $40 per month. In terms of advertising and marketing campaigns, we are planning to pay for posters printing and merchandise production, which cost $1200 in total. In order to build the brand, we are planning to hire a graphic designer and purchase Adobe Creative Cloud, which cost approximately 446.84. Regarding to other business costs, this includes Xero bookkeeping, business tax, business name registration and accounting, which account to $3120 in total.
We are still trying to get feedbacks from SEEF and UC Student Central for grants.
We are in contacts with some student organisations or representatives at UC and ANU, including UC SRC, ANUSA, PARSA, ANU Bruce Hall, Unilodge at UC for sending out surveys and promotion.
In return, we will be helping out with the excessive food wastage issue on campus and creating positives vibes of reducing food wastage. We are also looking into partnering with some local community such as OzHarvest and SecondBites.
We are initially targeting university students, and we are currently trying to reach out to community organisations (Second Bites, OzHarvest) to create campaigns, so as to expand the targeted customers. We are able to provide them a free online platform to trade or share excessive groceries. They then, therefore, able to minimise food wastage.
According to our refined business model, we are going to establish online currency that allows them to pay for virtual coins when they need to purchase on the platform. All new users will be given a certain amount of coins from the start and they can top-up when they need to. According to the customer validation, most respondents prefer to pay 8.5 cents for each coin.