The start-up business, founded by Markus Stripf, Tim Allen and Simon Oregan, employs data scientists, nutritionists and health professionals to combine machine learning algorithms with nutritional information for the food industry.
“We started our company because we observed the frustration, confusion and struggle people have with specific dietary requirements on a daily basis. In fact, it was when I saw my wife struggling in a supermarket to understand the ingredients written on the back of a packet and trying to work out what she could or couldn’t eat that gave me the idea,” said Stripf.
“When I discussed the issue with my two friends Simon and Tim - now co-founders at Spoon Guru - they immediately recognised the problem from their own experience and incidents in their family.
“We are successfully demonstrating how new technologies like AI and machine learning can add benefit to large corporations around the world keen to cater for increasingly complex consumer preferences and health requirements.”
Stripf added its mission is to help consumers discover the right foods whatever their dietary preference, health objective or lifestyle choice. It has already worked with supermarkets such as Tesco, Woolworths and Albert Heijn, and is in discussions with several other retailers around the world.
This year, the start-up launched the next phase in Spoon Guru’s mission to offer consumers friction-free food search and discovery with its Health & Wellness Suite.
The Suite works alongside its flagship Product TAGs system - which showcases relevant products based on individual requirements and preferences - to take food personalisation to the next level by allowing shoppers to discover suitable foods and recipes for their requirements by analysing their propensity and purchase behaviour.
Rich in ingredients
It has now launched the Immunity Support TAG in light of the current situation, to help consumers find foods rich in ingredients to boost the immune system.
“We are trying to help the retail industry to innovate but some patience is required and most improvements are based on a series of incremental steps rather than immediate transformations,” said Stripf.
“Being a start-up means we can be super agile and flexible but scaling operations quickly to bring our solutions to a global audience requires additional funding, expertise and bandwidth which we don't necessarily have in-house.”
He said with the global population now facing a pandemic, shoppers are looking for foods and supplements that will improve and maintain the body’s natural defences.
“Our in-house team of nutritionists and data scientists developed a technology to make it easier for shoppers to find products with immune-strengthening properties,” said Stripf.
“It can be leveraged by retailers to power online shopping and food discovery, along with labelling physical products and aisle markers in stores.”
The company now plans to expand into other territories. Having launched in the US, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand last year, it now plans to enter the market in Asia, South America and further.
Alongside this, it plans to grow its team and introduce more products to the platform.
“Overall, we will continue to push the boundaries for digital health and build tools to remove the friction from personalised food search and discovery, and to change outcomes for shoppers wherever they may be,” added Stripf.