Eats and the Future of Real Food.
I’m here to share with you why we’ve built Eats, and how we plan to change the way humans eat, forever.
Eats' raison d’être: To make 'real food' more transparenct and accessible to everyone.
Real food is food with transparency. Food which nourishes our bodies, our communities, and our planet as well. Kimbal Musk’s post sums this up very well: https://medium.com/food-is-the-new-internet/what-exactly-is-realfood-e4ccc1ebbe39#.1xp0enblo
The two biggest problems with food. Transparency & Accessibility.
Right now, the biggest problems in food are accessibility and transparency. Many people think our biggest problem in food is production. “How in the world are we going to feed a population of 9 billion people in 2050?” This is wrong. As it turns out, we’re producing more than enough food in the world to nourish everyone. We just can’t get it to them. Many people are either grossly overfed (obese, too much access), or grossly underfed (starvation, malnourishment). Let's dive a little bit deeper into each of those problems.
How do we know really know where our food came from? How do we know the people growing it have our best interest in mind? Are they using sustainable and organic practices when growing the food? Are humans in any way, shape or form being exploited in the production of the food? We currently don't have any good ways to tell. It's all blind faith. We need a way to verify farmers and restaurants are sourcing how they say they are. Not just slapping on a label to generate more buzz, and attract a younger demographic.
Does everyone in this world have the same level of access to healthy, nutritionally dense food? Some have access, and can't afford it. Some don't have access at all. It seems like a basic human right we all deserve don't we? Yet, this is not the case. When it comes to high-quality food, there is clearly an inequality. Take a look at the costs of organic produce and food. (Although it's coming down.) It's extremely difficult for the average person to justify.
So, how does Eats plan on solving these problems?
We’ve started by offering a simple service to the people who already have access to 'real food'. In my eyes, what we’re doing is comparable to Elon Musk’s first master plan for Tesla. Tesla started by building an expensive all electric sports vehicle, the Tesla Roadster. Though relatively few could purchase the vehicle, every purchase of a Roadster was helping pay for the development of a lower cost all electric family vehicle. This is precisely the model we will follow.
Note: This is generally true at all levels of innovation. Nearly every new piece of technology has a high cost initially or starts with the wealthier side of the income spectrum before it trickles down and is available for everyone. Think of some of our greatest innovations:
- Tesla (Tesla Roadster $110,000)
- Solar Power (Still pretty heavy installation / setup cost, but it’s coming down fast)
- Facebook (Started at Harvard then expanded to other Ivy League schools. To my knowledge, these are not the cheapest of universities.)
I’m sure we all couldn’t afford the iPhone when it first came out either... You get the point.
Step 1: Create a Simple Service
Eats is simple. It allows you to order and pay for your food before you get into a restaurant. The idea actually came from an experience I had with my stepfather while living here in Hawaii. We used to go to the same restaurant every single day. You can bet I got tired of going through the motions. Why go through the monotonous process of standing in line, paying, waiting for your food when you can tap a few buttons and have it ready when you get there? Whether you prefer take out, or a quality dine-in experience Eats ensures a better experience every time.
If there’s a crazy line out the door of your favorite restaurant, you just might have to pay a few extra $ to get your food when you want it.
We do it differently. Inside of the application we actually let people see where their food is coming from. We build profiles for the farms and their farmers, and show you how your food is being sourced. This is partly a solution to the transparency problem food has.
Also, not just any restaurant is allowed on Eats. We only allow locally sourced and/or organically sourced restaurants onto Eats. We do this for a few reasons:
- This is the type of quality food we believe in, and we fundamentally believe it’s what every human deserves. Quality, organic, food.
- The people who generally eat at these places are on the wealthier side of the spectrum. Let's face it, real organic food is expensive.
- Leverage. Restaurants now come to us, and ask how they can be on the Eats platform. We point them in the direction of farmers who follow organic and sustainable practices, and then bring them on the platform. All of a sudden, said restaurant is serving 'real food'.
Step 2: Create a Marketplace.
This is the process we’re currently in right now. Creating a live marketplace inside of Eats. Marketplaces do one thing extremely well. They facilitate competition. Competition drops prices. We’re going to make businesses compete for your health.
We see something particularly interesting going on in food and restaurant advertising. Restaurants often post on Instagram when they add a new item on the menu, want to showcase a particular item, or even post a special discount / deal.
But what does that actually do for the business? How can they tell the photo of the Cinnamon Roll (gluten free and vegan of course) they just posted actually drove foot traffic to their store? They can't.
We’re taking a different approach. Instead of having a double tap to ‘like’ button, we’re adding an order button. Restaurants can post to our feed, and instantly generate more business.
I can’t reveal too much about the feed, but we’re already developing the aspect of the marketplace which allows you to buy real, local produce within your area with just a few taps. We'll be unveiling the feed here shortly :)
Step 3: Farming, Restaurants, and AI.
Our food crisis is a global problem. Do starving / malnourished humans around the world need a platform where they can order and pay for their food ahead of time through a mobile device? The truth is, probably not. But, Eats will do much more. Especially when we launch the marketplace.
By using our service every 'user' will in essence will be paying to get real food in all parts of the world. With the money we make, we’re going to re-invest into small, local, organic farms everywhere. Maybe even start our own. Support and build locally/organically sourced restaurants in all parts of the world. While also making sure we’re investing in our own R&D to introduce artificial intelligence to restaurants, and farmers. This will drop the cost of 'real food' down dramatically.
Recap of Plan
• Scale our service to allow more people to order and pay for their food ahead of time.
• Create a live feed inside of Eats to allow restaurants to post deals, and farmers to post fresh produce harvested within your local area.
• Introduce and implement AI to bring prices of real food down. Build out local, organic farms, and restaurants that only use fresh, local, and organic ingredients.
We can see the future of real food, but it’s going to take all of us to get there. Vote with your dollars, buy local and organic, and be conscious of where your food comes from. Our current food system is not sustainable, and has failed to live up to it's promises of properly feeding everyone in this world. We need better. We've found our way to move us one step closer to the better future we all envision.
Mahalo for taking the time to read.
Matthew (Founder and CEO Eats, Inc.)