IGA and app developer aim to curb food waste

MONTRÉAL – IGA and FoodHero have launched a mobile app to fight food waste.

After successfully launching a pilot project in its Langelier store in collaboration with Montréal-based start-up FoodHero, IGA is expanding its program to five other stores before ultimately rolling it out to all of its Québec supermarkets.

This program is a win-win for consumers and retailers: consumers get discounted food and grocers sell their products, avoiding the economic and environmental (CO2 emissions) costs generated by producing, transporting and sending to a landfill food that is never eaten.

The FoodHero app lets users locate the nearest participating grocery store, fill the in-app shopping cart as desired, and pick up the order from the selected store during business hours.

The app includes new deals every day, including meat and fish, fruits and vegetables, dairy, eggs, even prepared meals. Users and grocers can also track, in real time, their personal impact on food waste reduction, calculated as CO2 emissions and kilograms of products saved, as well as the money saved.

“FoodHero was born from the desire to reduce food waste. The numbers revealed by scientific research are shocking, and, as citizens and entrepreneurs, we wanted to create a tangible solution to combat this epidemic,” explains Jonathan Defoy, founder of FoodHero.

“IGA quickly showed interest in the idea, and we are proud to announce this partnership. One of the challenges was making the app completely compatible with IGA’s systems, so that every day, and for every store, all of the products that would otherwise have been wasted could be offered. We are also in talks with other local companies, as well as a few large US players, who are considering implementing FoodHero. The excitement around tools that help reduce food waste is palpable, and we are happy to contribute to these solutions,” he adds.

“Sobeys, IGA’s parent company, has set a goal to reduce food waste by 50 percent by 2025,” says Carl Pichette, vice-president of marketing for Sobeys Inc.

“After reviewing the options available on the market, we chose FoodHero, a local start-up with a highly experienced team, to help us achieve this objective.”