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foodsearchinc.com Connects Customers & Restaurants During Pandemic

16 Apr 2020 - John

A co-winner of our week four competition, foodsearchinc.com, hopes to connect people to comprehensive information about the food they desire, and how to easily locate it.

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Many thanks to Vinson Luong for sharing the story of foodsearchinc.com with us. The responses are his, lightly edited for length and style.

Where did your idea come from, and what problem are you trying to address?

Our idea came from a local foodie Facebook group, where someone asked for a list of places that offer delivery and take out. The post received over 100 comments looking for a list, so we decided to make one using a spreadsheet! It received so much traction that we turned it into a searchable website. Businesses in the food industry, were being restricted from dine-in options, and were suffering; however, customers still wanted to continue supporting local businesses, so we built a platform where restaurants could continue to reach their customers.

Describe your project?

Our web application foodsearchinc.com, is a directory that makes it easier for small businesses like restaurants, grocers, bakeries, and anyone in the food industry to continue to reach their customers by indicating if they offer pickup or delivery services. Our project, while focused on Edmonton and area, can be scaled to any city. Data is solicited through google forms, verified by businesses, and then uploaded to a database. User accounts will be available for businesses to manage their own data in the near future.

Our project will be expanded to allow businesses to list menu items on a per dish basis, and provide more information about their amazing food. With this information, customers can create more targeted filtering and searches for the food they want, where to find it, and eventually order dishes directly from each place for pickup.

How did your team come together?

Our company, Food Search Inc., was created to increase the quality of information, and facilitate access to the food we eat, by creating a database of products and dishes with information such as: ingredients, allergens, and link this to information about where to find it. In January 2020, Tyler and I started our first project searchglutenfree.com, which helps individuals with celiac disease or gluten intolerance, find restaurants and dishes much easier. Due to the pandemic, we decided to repurpose the code, and created foodsearchinc.com to address problems faced by the food industry. Our team was made possible through networking opportunities facilitated by Startup Edmonton. A few chilled beers and meetings later, we teamed up to change the way people find information about the food they eat.

Where is your team based?

Tyler Findlay and I are from Edmonton.

Can you describe the skills you bring to the project?

Tyler, the technical co-founder is a full-stack software developer and Scrum master. I am a non-technical co-founder, and manage the operational and business development side.

How does it feel to be collaborating on a project at a time like this?

Rewarding, and solving a problem in real time while speaking with over 400 restaurant owners has been fulfilling.

What tools, made available by the hackathon, are you using?

Slack, and FindCollabs

Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Thank you to the team that put CODEVID-19 together! It’s such an amazing initiative for creating projects to help out during these uncertain times.

Thank you from CODEVID-19 for your fine effort, and best of luck in the future.

Website: foodsearchinc.com
Source code: N/A
Country: Edmonton, Canada