Sugar Salt Fat

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Goal
Stimulate better eating patterns, by improving the understanding of what we eat.

Why
Obesity is getting more and more of a problem.
This is a health risk for them and expensive for society.

How
Platform that makes it really easy to understand how healthy a product is.

Analysis

Eating healthy is (or at least feels) complicated. It seems that everything you eat or drink is unhealthy. If you eat or drink something, someone will say “research shows that this is bad for you”. Food labels are difficult to understand. As I’m writing this, I’m drinking “Multi fruit” juice, the label says: per 100ml, energy kJ 159 / kcal 38. To be honest, I have no idea if that is good or bad, and like most people I don’t care enough to do real research on it.

Labels are not the only option for knowing what is in the product. Food labels are created by the producer of the product, but improving the food labels to be easier to understand is against their interest. Why would they want to highlight any negative qualities of their products? Thankfully we can provide other channels to provide this information. For instance, a supermarket could provide this information, but they also have an interest in selling as many products as possible. So for me, it makes the most sense to have a neutral company/party to provide this information as a service.

The idea

  1. A tool on your mobile phone that helps you to quickly compare products and find out which one is healthier.
  2. A way to continuously collect information on the health of all products.

Mobile phone tool

This is the easy part, relatively speaking. You take a picture of a product, a label, or you type in the name and you will quickly see an easy to understand label and contextual information that helps you understand how healthy the product is. Also you can compare product X with product Y and see what product has a better health score for different qualities.

Collecting information on the products

My idea is to create a simple game that improves your understanding of what you eat, and also generates interesting data for the platform.

It is inspired by projects like Zooniverse (help process scientific data) and Fold.it (invent actual cures by doing a puzzle). Here are some sketches to show you how it could work:

Challenge

Why sugar, salt and fat?

  • Everyone knows those are bad
  • Everyone knows what it is
  • You can get a feeling for a product based on 3 qualities,
    but if you would have 10 it would feel overwhelming.

Why a game?

  • Generates traffic to platform
  • Generates interesting data on perception of products
  • Is engaging, you have to think about the product in order to win.

What is needed?

  • Money
    • It costs money to build something like this
    • I belief the platform should be profitable. This way investments can be made to keep the platform up to date. The money should not come from food producers or governments. So This way it will always be independent.
    • Possible forms of income:
      • Paid app and/or in-app purchases
      • Part of it can come from non-food sponsors. For instance a fitness brand or a tech company like Google, that just wants to be associated with something positive.
  • A team to do this
  • More ideas on how the platform could work. Here some more ideas I had myself:
    • Product pictures and information. From:
      • Existing databases of products.
      • User generated content. Users could be able to take pictures of products, and add them to the game. Perhaps they can earn points with it.
    • More information. A product page with a wiki and information generated by the game can be the starting point.

ProductOverview

So what do you think? And can you perhaps help me with this? In order to make this conversation public I suggest using twitter, replying to @ideagrowr. But you can also e-mail me or leave a comment here.

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