Goodr is a two-year-old startup that provides restaurants, airports, convention centers and other food service operations with a blockchain-based digital platform to track surplus food and a food waste recovery service. Essentially, Goodr offers insights to help food businesses reduce waste, and then picks up and donates what waste they don’t mitigate. Several similar platforms have sprung up in the last decade or so as the $270 billion problem of food waste enters the public consciousness and businesses see value in the work of mitigating waste and the halo effect that can follow.
Goodr’s rallying cry to its business clients is “wasted food is wasted money.” But beyond saving money, if food service operations are going to get serious about food waste, the logistics need to come with the offer. With a “white glove” logistics offering, recruiting big-ticket clients like Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and the Georgia World Convention Center weren’t the hard part. Building a user-friendly software platform also wasn’t the hard part. The hard part was running the operations behind all of the pickups and deliveries. And it wasn’t just hiring carriers to move the food. Crowe needed delivery capacity she could flex up and down with delivery volume so that she wasn’t paying for any unused capacity.
Crowd-sourced logistics was the answer. “What we started to do is partner with companies that are already out on the road,” she said. In December 2018, Goodr began partnering with these outside logistics providers and by April, the company was active in half a dozen cities across the country after two years of Georgia-only operations.
Crowd-sourced logistics services like Goodr partners Roadie and Truxx are a growing part of the gig economy. They function similar to Uber with a gig worker agreeing to pick up and deliver for a set rate. But for the startups focused on ferrying goods rather than people, vehicles and distances vary.
Roadie’s model focuses on targeting drivers who are already near a pickup and likely heading in the right direction for the delivery. And Truxx is focused on larger vehicles for larger loads. Crowe said that to these logistics providers, Goodr isn’t a charity case — it’s the same as any other customer. “To them, we’re just another customer, but to their employees, we’re the good customer. When it’s a Goodr pickup, they’re really excited to say yes and give that delivery because they’re helping to end hunger,” she said.