Our Startup of the Week for this week is Oddbox! A fruit and veg delivery service with a sustainable edge.
More than one third of all food produced across the globe is wasted or lost. Whilst an often overlooked contributor to climate change, food waste actually contributes a near 8% to the world’s greenhouse emissions. On a mission to reduce food waste, Oddbox was founded in 2016 by married couple Emilie Vanpoperinghe and Deepak Ravindran.
Oddbox re-claims fresh, seasonal fruit and veg that don’t quite meet the supermarket’s strict standards on size, colour or shape. Once rescued, and undergone thorough quality checks, these surplus foods are then delivered to customers 30% cheaper than similar box services. The startup also donate a certain percentage (up to 10%) of the produce to charities helping to tackle food poverty – including City Harvest.
Since its launch, Oddbox have become London’s Highest Rated Veg Box, and deliver their perfectly imperfect produce to over 10,000 London homes. The company have a range of different boxes to choose from, offering veg or fruit only boxes as well as a mixture of the two.
The sustainable fruit and veg provider has also raised a total of £3.5 million over the course of two funding rounds, a major contributor to this being its last round in March of this year, which raised £3 million.
The startup state that “Oddbox exists to fight food waste. At Oddbox we work with growers across the UK to rescue fruit and veg at risk of going to landfill. We never dictate what should be grown by our growers. When farmers have too much produce or it does not meet retailers cosmetic specs, we help them by taking it off their hands and finding mindful homes for it. We want to inspire people to eat sustainably, through rescued seasonal veg, that is carbon-positive for our planet.”
So far, Oddbox has helped to save 4,203,147kgs of fresh produce, subsequently saving 3,556,953kgs of CO2 (the equivalent of 3,607 London – New York return flights) and 817,334,278 litres of water (the equivalent of 6,009,811 8-minute showers).