Utah business cuts down food waste, fights inflation too

Nov 3, 2022, 7:38 PM | Updated: Nov 4, 2022, 10:52 am

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah business is trying to cut down on food waste by cutting costs.

Extrabites is an online marketplace where businesses in Salt Lake and Utah counties sell any extra food they have at the end of each day.

CEO and co-founder Luccin Ifote said he wants to tackle food waste and said Utah is the perfect place to start.

“Coming from a third-world country, I’m from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, we as Americans take food waste for granted,” Ifote said.

He’s partnered with several restaurants, bakeries and grocery stores to cut down on what they throw in the dumpster. He said, in the last few months, Extrabites has helped Utah businesses cut down on more than 2,000 pounds of food waste.

Users sign up for text notifications. They’ll get a message about any leftover food available. Items go on sale for up to 70 percent off. They can go pick it up in person.

“They go ahead and post it on our marketplace, then you’ll get a notification saying, ‘Hey, Chubby Baker, for instance, has surplus items,” Ifote said.

Ying Nance owns Chubby Baker and said it’s hard to predict how many food items will be sold on any given day.

“Some days we did the right forecast, some days it’s just slower than usual and we end up having lots of donuts we have to throw away,” Nance said.

She said Extrabites allows a lot more people to buy her pastries without breaking the bank.

“It’s nice to be knowing they get to try our stuff for a cheaper price,” she said.

She said since partnering with Extrabites, she’s thrown away around 50 fewer donuts each day because people are buying them online.

“It’s good that we can at least make some money from that and not have any food waste,” Nance said.

Ifote said Extrabites users have told him it’s helped them out a lot, especially with the cost of inflation.

“It’s been able to help them save money to get their kids an extra pair of shoes, or jeans…it’s been really helpful for these families that aren’t able to afford everyday prices,” he said.

Any business interested in partnering with Extrabites can sign up as a vendor on the website.

Ifote said Extrabites is working to expand to southern Utah soon.

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Utah business cuts down food waste, fights inflation too