A conversation with the CEO of Kafoodle Tarryn Gorre
by Aimee Rigby/9th-August-2021
So, welcome to Zero Waste Kode, would you like to introduce yourself and your company Kafoodle?
I’m Tarryn Gorre. I am the co-founder of a company called Kafoodle, and we are a food tech company that is all about food. So, we work on creating food information for commercial kitchens, and then communicating that out to diners, mainly in the education, healthcare, and hospitality space.
Great. Yes. So, where did Kafoodle begin? What was the inspiration to start the business?
So, I’ve been in hospitality my whole life, I pretty much grew up in hotels and started as a kitchen Porter when I was about 16.
And, my co-founder at the time, was a technologist, who’s husband had a severe food allergy. So, her and I become friends. And when we saw the EU legislation coming out of our food allergens, she was very passionate about how could we tell customers and diners what is safe for them to eat? Where I was a bit more realistic about how could we get that data off of commercial kitchens when most of them use Excel spreadsheets, and pen and paper. So that’s the idea of how Kafoodle came about, which is just a very easy to use B2B software that kind of mimics what Microsoft Word, pen and paper, and Excel would do, but has a bit more intelligence, and obviously, the automation of tech behind it.
So, what’s the vision you have for Kafoodle? What is the purpose, which you’ve talked about just a little bit there, but what is the overall vision for Kafoodle?
So, we want to be all about food with the outcome to improve human health. So that’s kind of a very abstract vision. But we believe that it will be easier for the world and specifically the UK and children to become much healthier if they have food information available at the touch of a button. And to do that, we need to get as many chefs and as many businesses onto the software, able to easily generate the nutrition, the micro nutrition, the allergens, and of course, for the business, their costs and all the things that help a kitchen run effectively. But most importantly, use all the disparate and lots of different food information that comes in, streamline it and make sure that it can be outputted to different platforms, whether that be a delivery platform, the restaurant’s own website, or into a care home, to make sure that people can easily see what the best and healthiest choices for them are. And that’s pretty much our vision- it’s that if we can make food information simpler, and people can be steered by the touch of a button with having something easily accessible, then naturally, you’ll start to make healthier choices. And we’ve specifically seen that in secondary schools.
Great. Yeah. So obviously, you’re doing a lot of good things, especially with allergens. But do Kafoodle take an interest in sustainability at all?
Yes, so one of the things we’ve just added into our data is, how sustainable is the ingredient? And, also we’re working with fantastic company around carbon footprints. So, we do both. And I think the big thing for sustainability for us is, especially when businesses are starting, is having the pricing and the costing of ingredients and understanding obviously, a more seasonal ingredient is generally cheaper, and is easy to use. So, we will be allowing you to further track sustainability and carbon footprint that you can actually say: this recipe has these sustainable ingredients and actually, this product as a whole, has this carbon footprint, which is quite exciting.
Tarryn Gorre the CEO of Kafoodle
Fantastic. Yeah. So how does Kafoodle help restaurants during and even after COVID with your digital solutions? Obviously now we’re coming into this world where we order on our mobiles, how does Kafoodle help with that?
So, in two ways. We naturally have our own product that allows restaurants to pre order and to have a system that allows you to pre order and pay- click and collect delivery, we do room service for hotels. And there’s basically a web-based app, which is a website or an app. That means a customer can come in, scan a QR code, put in if they have any dietary preferences, or they can just order food, add it to basket and pay for it. However, I think the main way that we’re actually helping is that we are agnostic. So we very much are a software that sits in a kitchen. And we have an API where that data can be sent to any ordering app. So, the main thing we want to do, is make sure that when someone is ordering and paying for something, as you say, from their table, which is the new normal, that they’re still able to access accurate and correct food information through whatever company or device they’re using. We’re just passionate about making sure that the information is captured in the kitchen and then sent correctly out to these different devices, whether it’s a proprietary app with loyalty, or whether it’s just the restaurant’s website.
Amazing. So, we’ve talked a little bit about allergens, how your business partner’s husband suffers with severe allergies. Can you tell us a bit about Natasha’s law, which you’re obviously very passionate about, and how your company can help businesses get ready to comply with the law?
Sure, so Natasha’s law, as we all know, is coming out in October 2021. I think speaking candidly, that there’s a lot of hype around it. And a lot of businesses will not need to comply with it. So, it is very much around pre-packaged for direct sale. So that doesn’t mean for a pub, oh, someone’s ordered my roast lamb, I need to label it. It is a case of, if you wrap up sandwiches on a Monday, and someone comes in and buys a chicken sandwich that you’ve already packaged, that is obviously the pre-package part of it. So, I think it’s very important for businesses to know whether they need to comply or not, before having a knee jerk reaction. And then I think where Kafoodle sits is, we try to make it as easy as possible. So, we are a recipe kitchen management system. If your recipe is already in Kafoodle, then we will take that data and auto generate a Natasha’s law compliant label for you.
And we can also do that with front of pack and back of pack labelling as well, should you need it. And I think where we want to support on that, is it is just a recipe that the chef would normally type up. And then they can choose to do Natasha’s law compliant label. And the reason why I really wanted to do this ages ago, when front of pack labelling was a legal requirement, is the fact that I really do think a lot of businesses coming out of COVID need to innovate. And that might not only be relying on people coming in and sitting down inside, but there are also a lot of pubs, for instance, in the city of London, or even on the way to work in the morning, when you live in the countryside, where you might want to grab a takeaway sandwich, or a takeaway pie. And I think it might be a way for businesses to generate extra income. But as we saw with the allergen legislation, a lot of businesses might just be overly wary of this unknown food labelling law that’s coming out. And it’s not that hard to comply, is my main message. If you’re writing up recipes, it is easy to comply with Natasha’s law, you just need to know what’s in your food, which a lot of the fantastic restaurants and pubs we work with, and cafes, know already.
Above images; Kafoodle app and user interface to break down your menus
Fantastic, yes. So currently, you’re measuring your social impact as a company, what sort of an impact are you expecting to make?
So, the huge vision is that we will have an impact on the way people eat. And because of that, will have an impact on human health.
Now that is very, very hard to measure. So, when we break that down, we obviously look at the social impact we have in schools, you know, how many times does a child make a healthy decision, because they can easily see the traffic light system of the difference between the chocolate brownie and the chopped-up apple. And that’s much easier to track. And in care homes, it’s really interesting with the social impact, because it’s tracking the effect of nutrition on frailty and on mind and on agile living, as we call it, and living longer. So, we really want to have a really big impact on later life, and especially with the rise of dementia, ensuring that people get really good nutrition. And then I think one of the social impacts that we’ve tried that I was quite new to tracking impact, so I found quite interesting, but I suppose in hindsight, incredibly obvious; is the impact that it actually has on chefs, in schools, in restaurants and in care homes, knowing that they are doing the best they can to make the food transparent.
There’s nothing worse for a chef putting someone in danger, whether it’s through food poisoning, or allergens or anything, you want to do your best. And I think the mental health impact it has on people cooking in schools, having a software that backs them up, and helps him see the allergens and helps him see what they need to see- that has quite a big impact on them. No matter whether it’s a care home, a school, or even in a restaurant- because you know, you did everything right. And you can see it transparently, it kind of just takes that extra weight off of them. And that’s obviously taken a step further in care homes or when people are caring for someone that they can digitally see what the best options are for someone. It makes their job better. So, I think that’s quite interesting to me, is the actual impact on people using our software from the business side and how it takes that stress off of their everyday lives has been fantastic to see.
Absolutely, yes. So finally, where can our listeners find out more about Kafoodle and get in touch if they’d like more information?
So please do visit our website. It’s www.kafoodle.com and there’s quite a lot of information on that. Otherwise, you can reach out to us directly, is my email address is my name. So it’s firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you have.
Fantastic. Well, thank you so much for joining us today and coming on the podcast.
Thank you so much for having me. It was really fun.