Ever wondered what happens to the leftover food at your fave grocery stores or cafes at the end of the day? While we like to think that surplus food is donated, more often than not it’s simply tossed out in the trash. Did you know that more than 50 percent of all food produced in Canada is wasted? That’s the weight of 273 CN towers and the equivalent weight of 736,000 TTC streetcars. Well, not anymore because a new app has just launched in Canada and it’s not only helping you save big on groceries, but it’s working hard to combat food waste.
Too Good To Go has just touched down here in Canada, starting in Toronto but the app has already made its mark in other cities like Chicago, Washington D.C., San Francisco, Philadelphia, and more. There are also plans for the app to expand throughout Canada in the coming months.
Wondering how it all works? Anyone with the app is able to purchase a ‘Surprise Bag’ of food at one-third of the retail price from local restaurants, bakeries, cafes, stores, and other food sellers.
The Surprise Bag addresses the unpredictable nature of food waste which allows the app’s partner businesses the flexibility to save any and all food, including prepared food and beverages, that would otherwise go to waste. Users can shop from grocery stores like Fresh City Farms, Eataly, and Summerhill Market as well as cafes and local eateries like Greenhouse Juice, Third Wave Coffee, Mabel’s, and Essence of Life Organics to name just a few.
“There’s a natural alignment for our app in Canada,” said Lucie Basch, Too Good To Go Co-Founder in a release. “We’re excited about the potential the app has to make an immediate impact among Canadians, who pride themselves on being environmentally – and food waste-conscious, but who may not have access to the tools that help them be part of the solution. We know that the enthusiasm we’re feeling from our amazing partners in Toronto is just the beginning and we can’t wait for Torontonians to start discovering Surprise Bags and leading the movement in Canada.”
Combating food waste isn’t just an issue within the industry, it’s become a political priority. Local leaders acknowledge the critical role it plays in carbon reduction plans. Toronto Mayor John Tory welcomed the environmental and business support Too Good To Go is bringing to the city, and said, “As Toronto re-opens and customers return to regular buying habits, many small businesses will encounter new supply issues such as surplus food.”
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Mayor Tory continued, “Too Good To Go is the perfect solution to the massive food waste problem in our country. By connecting businesses to customers to help minimize food waste we can all do our part and get great food from local companies. We’re thrilled Too Good To Go has selected Toronto as their first Canadian city and welcome them into our vibrant community.”
Too Good To Go is has also partnered with Daily Bread Food Bank in the city to support their vital work in the food insecurity space. Plus, there’s even an in-app donation feature that lets customers select ways in which to contribute to Daily Bread’s fight against hunger in the city.