Starving students can buy restaurant leftovers through the help of a new phone app

Starving students can buy restaurant leftovers through the help of a new phone app

CultureAugust 15, 2016 By Brian Frederick

For many around the world, college classes begin soon enough. What that means for countless trillions of students around the globe is the beginning of a debt-filled life fueling questions about where their next meal will come from — or if they'll even be able to eat anything besides Ramen ever again. 

We've already shown you how to eat free for an entire month, but what about the other 3 years and 11 calendar flips? Beg? Settle with someone richer? Die?

That's where the new app Too Good To Go comes in. It's a phone utility designed to allow restaurants and other places that serve food to sell leftovers at the day's closing, or after peak hours if there's anything left. 

The app's goal is to alleviate the massive food waste and give those less fortunate an opportunity to come up in the world at a discounted rate (anywhere from $2 to $5 for an entire meal).

“Food waste just seems like one of the dumbest problems we have in this world,” co-founder James Crummie tells Business Green. “The restaurant industry is wasting about 600,000 tonnes of food each year, and in the UK alone there are one million people on emergency food parcels from food banks. Why do we have these two massive social issues that are completely connected, yet there is not much going on to address them?”

The app is only available in Brighton, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds as of right now, and will be in London later this month. But it plans to expand to other countries in the future.

How effective is it?

Per the app's site, "In the space of barely six months, we’ve helped prevent approximately over 200 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions and provided thousands of meals that would have otherwise been discarded to those in need."

Whether or not a program like this would be viable in the states is hard to gauge. Considering the meals are fresh and not past any of the arbitrary 'best of' dates on labels, it could work. If this thing does well overseas, we'll likely see a bunch of knock-offs trying to piggy-back on its idea soon. Considering we waste close to 40 percent of our food here in the U.S., giving places even a small chance to do something about it seems like it could be big business. 

Yet, unless you're living in Europe right now, you'll likely have to spend another semester with painful stomach gurgles, chugging starvation water to shut them out. Until someone here makes a version of Too Good To Go, you're shit out of luck.

Which is basically an ongoing theme if you're going to college anyway. Welcome to the real world, students ...