Foodsteps, a food technology start-up that allows businesses to calculate, reduce and label the environmental impact of their food, has launched in the UK today.
The company, founded by Cambridge University alumna Anya Doherty, has developed an ‘impact database' holding data incorporating the carbon footprint, pollution, water use and land use of more than 1,000 ingredients.
Developed alongside scientists and academics at the University of Cambridge, Foodsteps offers a cloud-based platform, labelling capability and QR codes.
On the platform, food providers can upload recipes and view the sustainability impact of each ingredient. It can be used to monitor targets, develop new recipes and improve a menu or product's sustainability.
Companies can choose to print their own labels to communicate the environmental impact of a product. These labels provide a traffic light rating from A-F (A meaning low environmental impact, F meaning high environmental impact), with each label containing a QR code that buyers can scan to learn more about the product's impact and what the company is doing on sustainability.
Its clients include University College London, recipe box delivery services Gousto and Detox Kitchen, as well as healthcare company BUPA.
The formal launch of the company and its platform follows the completion of its pre-seed funding round backed by Techstars and Coreangels.
Anya Doherty, chief executive and founder of Foodsteps, said: "Restaurants, caterers and food providers are increasingly looking for ways to review, improve, and demonstrate their action on sustainability. Foodsteps allows them to do that, by giving them access to the latest technology and data, without the commitment and fees associated with traditional carbon assessments.
"With our platform, consumer tools and carbon labelling capabilities, brands can differentiate themselves in the market and communicate with customers in ways they never have before. It is my belief that if we can make assessing and communicating environmental information in the food industry more accessible and standardised, there is no reason why it won't become as widespread as nutritional information."