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This article was published on October 2, 2015

Bareo makes it easy to log and manage your food pantry

Bareo makes it easy to log and manage your food pantry
Napier Lopez
Story by

Napier Lopez


Napier Lopez is a writer based in New York City. He's interested in all things tech, science, and photography related, and likes to yo-yo in Napier Lopez is a writer based in New York City. He's interested in all things tech, science, and photography related, and likes to yo-yo in his free time. Follow him on Twitter.

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Keeping track of your kitchen pantry can be cumbersome, especially if you’re trying to run some sort of food business. Bareo wants to make your life easier.

It works with a simple three-step process: input your recipes, track your pantry, and then manage your food orders.

Bareo 2

It will then will automatically provide prices for all your recipes, help you restock before ingredients run out, and help you share your items to social media. The app works with Square and Shopkeep to help log items.

Bareo costs $10 a month for individuals, with no limits on items or recipes.

We got in touch with Karen Timmerman, co-founder and designer for Bareo, to learn more about how they got their startup up and running.

Tell us what you do in a couple of sentences.

Bareo, the smartest food inventory app, makes food inventory tracking and supplying easy, automatic and more reliable. Bareo integrates with Square and Shopkeep to track inventory further than these apps have the capability to track. Bareo is specifically designed by food makers for food businesses.

What’s your origin story? What made you decide to get into kitchen inventories?

Bareo is a female-led startup that came out of the pilot year of 30 Weeks: a program to turn designers into tech founders put on by Google Creative Lab and Hyper Island. After design school and a couple design jobs, I decided to start my own food company.

I was born and raised in Mexico and moved to Detroit when I was 14. After spending so much time hunting for real Mexican food (or even just salsa), I realized that unless I put my own product into the market, I was never going to find what I was looking for in terms of flavor and quality. So I started a salsa company following what I thought were the Michigan Cottage Food Laws (which allow businesses to start from home kitchens).

A couple successful months later I tried to get my salsa into some farmer’s markets. It was then that I was told that what I was doing was 100 percent illegal. By that point, I had applied to 30 Weeks thinking that if I were to make something in tech, it would have to be a tool for my business. When I got accepted to 30 Weeks, I knew exactly what I wanted to build – and that project became Bareo.

Who’s your biggest competitor and what do you do better than them?

My biggest competitor is now my biggest ally. Square just recently changed its integrations policy. Before this happened, it seemed like building our own POS system as well as trying to convert very happy Square customers was going to be an uphill battle.

Luckily, with their change in policy, we are now able to integrate and truly focus on our product which is the inventory and resupplying of food ingredients. This is something that Square doesn’t do. Square is a great tool for startups in general, but where Square fails to meet the needs of food entrepreneurs, Bareo takes over.

Get rich or change the world – which is more important and why?

Getting rich would be a really nice bonus to changing how the world works. I believe technology has the ability to change how the world works. We have the unique opportunity to prompt more localized supply chains to thrive by making it as easy to order from them as it would be from any multi-national brand. We are giving the same competitive advantage to all our suppliers in our network.

Tell us a weird fact about someone on your team.

Zach, one of our co-founders, used to have chickens in his backyard and sold some of the eggs to his neighbors. I am not sure if he knows this part of the story, but a conversation between him and I about his chickens inspired a lot about Bareo. Apparently, he had to give away the chickens because of city ordinances.


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