Let's go save some food!
Role: UI designer
Context: Application to stop food waste
Duration: Remote 2 week collaborative sprint
My individual contribution
On the Food Awakening project we were placed into groups of four. We worked remotely on the project and for the next two weeks we had to create an application that would help reduce food waste with in Canada. Throughout the project I contributed to; research, interviews, user testing, and I was the lead UI designer.
Level 1: Research
We explored the issue of food waste within Canada and brainstormed ideas of how to limit if not eliminate it through the use of digital technology. We decided that we wanted to make the act of saving food from being wasted as something worthwhile and even fun to do. So we decided to dig a little deeper into this issue.
We discovered that 58 percent of food produced in Canada – that’s 35.5 million metric tonnes – is lost and wasted annually.
Of that, 32 percent – equalling 11.2 million metric tonnes – is avoidable and is still edible.
The total financial value of this potentially rescuable lost and wasted food is a staggering $49.46 billion.
Narrowing that down, the average Canadian household spends $1766 on food that is wasted every year.
When conducting the interviews we created a variety of questions. We curated some specific question and some open ended questions. Each designer went to interview three different people with the same set of questions.
How many days of the week do you enjoy cooking food at home, and how often do you eat out?
How much time do you set aside for planning food prep in a week? If not, why?
How often do you overestimate the amount of food you will need at home when grocery shopping?
When you eat at home, how do you save leftovers and dispose of food waste? Any go to resources?
As a guess, how much food from farm to table do you believe goes to waste in Canada?
How can disposing food waste be an activity that is less stressful and worthwhile for you to do?
Forgets about their food
A 100% of the people that we interviewed often forgot what food was in their fridge. This developed into food waste due to repurchasing or letting the food go to waste
Likes to cook at home
The majority of people interviewed enjoy cooking food at home. It was more cost effective and helped them to be healthy.
60% of the interviewed people meal prepped or planned out what they will eat in the following week. This did in some sense help them to reduce food waste.
Awareness about food waste
47% of the interviewed people knew how to properly dispose of their food waste, but did not know the severity of the food waste issue in Canada.
From our interviews, we’ve discovered that people generally prefer to cook at home to save money and eat healthy. However, despite their efforts to save money, food is still wasted when it is forgotten somewhere in the back of the fridge, when meals are not planned properly, or when they decide to go out to eat or order take out.
So we decided to do something about that with Food Awakening.
Level 2: Interviews & Personas
Location: Vancouver Canada
He usually forgets what food he has in the fridge and never knows what took cook with the random food items left in the fridge.
I want an easy reminder of the food in my fridge, and I want easy recipe suggestions on what I can create.
Level 3: Our goals and HMW
Our app aims to offer solutions to the issues that Jimmy is currently facing. Our goal is to allow Jimmy to track food easily. This can be done by syncing his grocery bill and having food items automatically populate in the app. Our next goal is to provide easy recipes that are catered to using ingredients already inside his fridge. At the same time, also making it fun and rewarding for Jimmy to eliminate food waste. That brings us to our big question.
How might we track perishables in
a fun and consistent way in order
to reduce food waste effortlessly?
Level 4: Process work
Task flow/ Grey wire frames
Receiving a notifications of your dying food and creating a recipe and earning some rewards
Receive notification that some of your food items are ready for a quest.
Select your category quest you would like to embark on. Selected quest is snack.
Select your party members to join your quest.
Select recipe quest.
Go on your quest by creating you selected recipe.
Take a photo of you created food item.
Post your picture to social media.
Divide your food items into section of; eaten, froze, leftovers, waste.
View your data on how you are saving food and eliminating waste.
View your rewards.
Move a long the rewards path to level-up.
Level 5: High fidelity
Pick your party
The pick your party feature was created so that you are able to scan your food items and have them listed with their best before dates within the app. The application is then able to track your food item and will be able to alert you when your items need to be consumed so that they won't go to waste. The items that time is closets to the end will be listed at the top. The items are also color coordinated.
You are able to select the food items you are going to use and will be given optional recipes to choose from if you don't have inspiration to make something but need to use some items.
Select your quest
Select you quest feature are suggested recipes due to your selected food items. This features helps you to find delicious easy recipes with what you have left in your fridge helping you to eliminate your food waste. You can search through different recipes by swiping right you can the select your favorite recipe and create it.
With the research we conducted we came to the conclusion that the a lot of the people we interviewed had no motivation to limit their food waste. So we thought of how we could motivate our consumers and this is how a rewards program came to mind. Every time the customer completes their weekly goals and log their goal they will receive some point and level up and can receive rewards.
Level 6: User Testing
After creating our high-fidelity designs we went into some user testing. Our testers were young professionals who often struggled to track their food.
Our testers were able to navigate with ease through out the whole of the app. They loved the concept and the characters. The UI helped the testers stay engaged. They got motivated by the game like characters and the goals that they are able to achieve. The testers also commented that this will be an app that they will reuse often.
The features that we could improve was the selecting of food items. Some of the testers got confused about selecting the items and then receiving a recipe. The testers were also curious about how the rewards system worked and what they were able to receive.
Level 7: Next steps
After finishing the group project I decided to complete our next step and did some re-design on the pages. I also designed a brand new prototype with animations and improved transitions.
So my next step on the project will be to explore the other applications within the app, such as; What is included in the profile page?, What does the home page look like?, How to scan your food items so that it can be logged into the app?