Spoiler Alert: Food Distributors CAN Cut Waste 🗑 [GreenGut Weekly Find 9/12]

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Happy Saturday, my fellow nerds! 😁☀️Coming at you with a weekend edition of the GreenGut Weekly Find. Thanks for taking a few minutes in the middle of your plans to check it out.

This week, I’m returning to my soapbox topic of food waste. As a member worker in the produce department at my local co-op, I see firsthand how much food 🍆🍓🥬🥑🥦 winds up in cull—that is, taken off the shelf because it spoils before it gets purchased or is just a little on the ugly side. I’ve also witnessed people pass over perfectly good produce that was just stocked out and ask for something “fresher.”

And, most frustrating of all: people at the farmers market who turn up their noses at seconds.🤦🏻‍♀️ (Pro tip: Pretty much anything in a farmer’s compost bin is still perfectly good. Ask about it the next time you’re at a local market!)

Because this is such a big deal for me, I’m happy to put the spotlight on Spoiler Alert this week.

Any business that deals in food, be it a distributor or retail outlet, faces the dual problem of loss and waste. Boston-based tech startup Spoiler Alert is meeting the challenge with a suite of software 💻 and services 🚚designed to make managing unsold food inventory a whole lot easier.

Instead of tossing excess or distressed inventory (that’s the stuff that either hit its sell-by date or is just about to), businesses can use Spoiler Alert’s sales management platform to connect with liquidation buyers 💰 and organizations accepting food donations. 🥘

The whole process is completely scalable and allows food businesses to create long-term relationships with buyers through the use of personalized campaigns and ongoing nurturing. Think of it sort of like marketing for food that would otherwise go to waste. Detailed analytics 📊 make the whole process more efficient and help businesses identify the most beneficial opportunities.

The result? Businesses recoup some of their losses, and a bunch of food stays out of landfills. And by contributing food donations, companies have an opportunity to make a positive impact on their communities.

This is all especially important as we continue to take a critical look at our broken food system and seek better, more economical ways to get food 🍴 to people who need it. We need more options like Spoiler Alert to reduce waste, improve consumer education and generate more pipelines for distribution. The startup has already partnered with companies like Sysco and HelloFresh to direct unsold food to other outlets.

I commend Spoiler Alert’s CEO, Ricky Ashenfelter, and the whole team behind the tech for dedicating themselves to a solution that benefits both businesses and people in need. 👍🏻


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