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Too Good To Go

Technology · France

The French APP that Allows You to Save Food, Money, and the Planet

An app destined to “inspire and empower everyone to fight food waste together”, Too Good To Go was co-founded by its President, Lucie Basch in 2016. Today, Lucie – recognised as one of Forbes’ “30 under 30” entrepreneurs – has transformed the handy phone app into one of the biggest anti-waste success stories to impact the agri-food industry.

In France, over 25 million shopping baskets have been snapped up by savvy app users who have collectively downloaded Too Good To Go 9 million times in order to access fruits (and veggies) from 18 thousand business partners! Identifying the astonishing demand for her product, Lucie Basch has developed the offering in 16 countries, providing work for another 1000 people.

The business model is simple: supermarkets, restaurants, bakeries and other actors in the food chain upload their unsold foodstuff onto the Too Good To Go platform, where connected app users can browse and select groceries for around a third of the price. More than a win/win situation says Lucie, rather a “win, win, win” considering the positive effects in terms of sustainability on many levels: corporate citizenship, socially responsible action, a decreased carbon footprint, to name but a few.

The benefits of the app are self-evident and have a far-reaching, life-altering potential, according to Lucie Basch, named as one of the ‘100 women who are changing the world’ by the Challenges magazine in 2020. Having asked herself “What if the whole world were to fight against waste?”, the entrepreneur started exploring that possibility, using education as the key driving force to create awareness – especially among younger generations. The Too Good to Go head is launching a campaign aimed at educating schoolchildren in the futility of waste and has started a network #MaVilleAntiGaspi* to rally town councils into developing their own zero waste policies.

In January 2020, Too Good To Go was behind the Anti-Waste Pact signed by 60 agri-food actors with the Ministry of Agriculture and Ecological Transition on “sell by and use by” dates. The European-level agreement is the focus of a national awareness campaign and stands behind a new pictogram to be placed on food labels, making “sell by” dates more easily visible. As part of the pact, supermarkets are creating Anti-Waste aisles.

The company has also published a guide for consumers and food producers alike that sets out the principles of how to fight food waste, working closely with the French government on a legislation for circular economy.

During the Covid pandemic, Too Good To Go was able to assist food producers and warehouses in selling their stock after restaurants closed and helped supermarkets prepare ‘Necessity Baskets’, which allowed shoppers to reduce time spent in the aisles. Staff at Too Good To Go worked from home whenever possible and, when in the office, they used gel, masks and disinfectant. Floor stickers helped staff members comply with social distancing rules and a specialized Health Unit watched over their fitness and wellbeing.

At work, given the raison d’être of the company, corporate social responsibility (CSR) is second nature for Too Good To Go staff; their one objective is to reduce the company’s carbon footprint. For example, all professional telephones are reconditioned models from Back Market. As the boss, Lucie Basch obviously emanates vibes of CSR wherever she goes, seeking to engage staff in thought-inspiring debates and encourage ‘sustainable innovation’. Her goal is to keep a happy workplace as a means to promote wellbeing.


*  #MyNoWasteTown