iSpoil: A shopping app with an environmental twist

food waste

Expired MilkiSpoil is a grocery shopping list app with a cool twist. Its main purpose is to combat the amount of food users are wasting. The last time you cleaned out your fridge how much food did you throw away? Why should you care?

In the UK alone, 8.3 million tonnes of food is thrown out of households every year, it’s an issue that costs average families £680 annually, and it has a serious impact on the environment. As environmental groups in the UK have pointed out, the CO2 impact of all that wasted food would be equal to taking one in four cars off the road.

It’s the same case in North America:

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Loss Project, we throw away more than 25%, some 25.9 million tons, of all the food we produce for domestic sale and consumption – The Environmental Magazine, 2010

food waste

The iSpoil iPhone app has a database full of typical food items that speed up the process of entering expiry dates. After selecting an item such as milk, users can easily scroll through and select a date. Items that are not found can be added to iSpoil coupled with a picture taken from the iPhone’s cam or from the device’s photo library. Within any item, the app enables users to add the item to a shopping list displayed on a separate screen.

iSpoilWhen a food item is close to reaching the end of its shelf life, iSpoil will send you an alert that can be customized to tell you from one day to one week before its expiry date.

Wasting food might not be one of your number one concerns, but in many places around the world it’s completely sinful.

In my house growing up, you didn’t leave the table until you were finished your food. Despite whether you liked the meal or not, throwing out perfectly good food was something that was unfathomable to my parents. It’s a value that, for whatever reason, is lost on my generation.

This app is beneficial to users for a few reasons. It reduces the amount of food you throw away which saves you money, and it’s a pretty solid grocery app because in addition to the shopping list, you have access to the database of expiring food. The only drawback here is taking the time to enter the fresh dates, something that we’re hoping can be done in the future by simply scanning a product’s barcode.

iSpoil is available for .99 in the app store.

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