According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), about 30 to 40 percent of the food supply in the United States goes to waste. This percentage translates to billions of pounds of mismanaged food. The primary challenge is getting food to people in need before it spoils. Spoiler Alert helps solve the issue of food waste by diverting hundreds of pounds of food that would otherwise be destined for the landfill.
How does this work? The company offers a business-to-business online marketplace that helps companies manage their surplus food inventory so they can get it to the right place before it goes to waste. The software allows a range of organizations and people to benefit from this logistics system. Companies such as food manufacturers, wholesale distributors, and grocery retailers can see what products are not selling quickly and become more efficient with their product management. Meanwhile, nonprofits and discount food companies can help others by redirecting the surplus food to people in need.
A team of MIT alumni are the masterminds behind Spoiler Alert, and several investors in the food industry are currently involved in helping it grow. The Boston based company is focused on being transparent in every way and endeavors to create tangible results for businesses, individuals and the environment.
So how does this happen? The Spoiler Alert team builds technology that helps food businesses efficiently manage their unsold inventory. First, the company can quickly post what they have in stock. This update prompts an automatic notification to the network of recipients. The system then allows everyone involved to communicate in real-time so that they can move quickly and easily. When anyone purchases food, the system has a smooth and safe payment method set in place to bring it all together.
The software works well because, in addition to the online marketplace which facilitates quick food donations and discounted sales, the software also offers a web platform so business can easily track and analyze what they’re successfully selling. As a result, companies are more efficiently meeting their bottom lines, and when a surplus item doesn’t sell, they can quickly get that food into the right hands while receiving a tax benefit. The data is helpful for everyone in the decision making process because it takes out a lot of guesswork that leads to waste.
The best part of Spoiler Alert is that it’s a win-win situation for everyone. For businesses, they can use the software to save money, solve inefficient food management, comply with waste regulations, and manage local vendor relationships. For nonprofits, this system is a no-brainer. Spoiler Alert helps them save time and connect with sources of healthy food at a good price.
While there’s currently a fee for users selling discounted food and other transactions, the company is working on subscription packages that are accessible to everyone. The software is entirely free to use for donors and recipients when an organization is donating food to a nonprofit.
Right now, Spoiler Alert works with farms, nonprofits, and food businesses in the New England area. To get involved and help reduce food waste, you can read more on SpoilerAlert.com.