Too small, crooked, too fat, too thin or past its due date. In Germany, a truckload of food is wasted and thrown away every minute. Per year this amounts to 18 million tons of food waste in Germany alone. Sounds crazy?
If food waste were a country it would be the third-largest CO2 emitter in the world after China and the USA (Check out: Food Waste – The Dumbest Problem video). This shows how reducing food waste is one of the two major factors we need to focus on in order to help halt climate destruction.
SIRPLUS is a young Berlin-based Social Impact Startup, which focuses on saving food before it is thrown away.
Founded by Raphael Fellmer and Martin Schott in 2017, SIRPLUS fights food waste by bringing surplus food back into the cycle.
How it works
SIRPLUS buys and collects leftover, and perfectly enjoyable food directly from producers, suppliers, and farmers and sells them in their “Rescue Supermarkets” (German: Rettermarkt) in Berlin as well as through their online shop at a 70 percent discount. In collaboration with laboratories and onsite, they test their products on micro-bacteria and other risk factors previously to placing them on the store shelves. Throughout the EU it is legal to sell products past expiration date if and once they have been tested.
SIRPLUS also offers weekly, monthly and yearly food box deliveries (free shipping) for busy people and those who live remotely.
One of their core values is to put charity first, making sure that they only rescue food the homeless shelter doesn’t need. And thus, SIRPLUS has donated over half a million food products to Berlin-based charity such as the Berliner Tafel, and in cooperation with the Berlin Recycling GmbH, they are reducing waste from the get-go.
This start-up is growing and multiplying fast. Coming up the beginning of 2020, SIRPLUS plans to further expand its mission with a newly developed franchising concept. Through an APP they will be able to share their know-how and expertise in order to make it as easy as possible for new food rescue supermarkets to establish swiftly all over Germany and the European Union.
Alongside opening additional branches, SIRPLUS wants to enable a growing number of people to save food easily. Large corporations such as METRO and other companies actively involve initiatives like SIRPLUS, as they have set their goal of reducing food waste in their own operations by 50% by 2025.
SIRPLUS has won numerous awards such as the “Next Economy Award” and “Zu gut für die Tonne” from the German Government Ministry of Food and Farming. You can find out more about heir work in various media, TV-, and Radio shows such as Galileo, PULS, rbb, shopify, Markus Lanz.