With so many universities, tech companies, and startups in Boston, there is no doubt that Boston is a hotbed of innovation. This is true in many areas, including food!
There has been some great food startups that have come out of Boston, from food products to mobile platforms to food trucks. Here are some recent Boston food startups with great ideas that you should watch for:
So you’re lactose intolerant, but you love ice cream. Sure, there are plenty of vegan ice creams and other alternatives out there now, but deep down you miss that dairy ice cream of the old days. So did Minus the Moo’s co-founder, Katy Flannery.
Minus the Moo is the first lactose-free ice cream that’s made of real dairy. How do they do this, you ask? They add lactase enzyme to break down the lactose in the ice cream. While working as a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit nurse, Katy experimented making her lactose-free ice cream. After getting her recipe right, she finally launched Minus the Moo with her friend Gwen in 2015. The ice creams are lab-tested to ensure there’s no detectable amount of lactose left, so all other lactose intolerant ice cream lovers can enjoy the creamy taste they loved.
It takes two guys as sleep deprived as college students to come up with an idea like Coffee Bar. Johnny Fayad and Ali Kothari were two Northeastern freshman undergraduate students. When you have to wake up early for a class or to go to work, you barely have time to grab breakfast and/or coffee. Not to mention rushing from your house to class or work with your breakfast in one hand and a hot cup of coffee in the other hand. So Fayad and Kothari came up with Coffee Bar. Coffee Bar is an all-natural energy bar that is not only filled with nutrition you need, each bar is also infused with a full cup of coffee. Many people agree that this is a great idea, and they raised $40,000 through Kickstarted in 2014. Their product has since been featured in The Oprah Magazine, BuzzFeed, and Food & Wine.
A winner of the 2015 MassChallenge out of MIT, Spoiler Alert is an app that connects food businesses and farms with non-profits and discount buyers in an effort to reduce food waste. Food waste is an increasingly significant problem in our country today. An estimated 40% of all the food in the US going to waste. Food businesses can list their surplus food in real time to the online platform. This will trigger an alert to potentially interested parties. Farms can either sell their surplus produce or buy food waste for compost. Businesses can donate their surplus food to non-profits and the platform will track all the transactions for tax benefits. They hope that this platform can make it easier for both parties to generate extra revenue and reduce food waste and help the environment.
To put it simply, GoPapaya is like HotelTonight for restaurants. Restaurants have long tried to fill their tables during down times. There are daily offers like happy hour and discounted pricing, even bonus points on OpenTable reservation. GoPapaya is an app that makes it easy for restaurants to do so in real time, and help consumers save money on dining out.
Restaurants can list their table on GoPapaya in real time and offer a discount on the bill to attract customers. Customers select a restaurant to dine at using the discount on the app. They then have 30 minutes to arrive at the restaurant. Their arrival is tracked using Bluetooth. Guests will automatically receive the listed discount on their bill - anywhere between 10-50%. When the restaurant becomes busier, they can elect to take off the tables from the app for the time being. Next time you are undecided about where you want to dine for lunch or dinner, open up GoPapaya and see where you can save money! GoPapaya is currently only available in the Boston area.
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