Reducing food waste with your existing food subscription


10 weeks  
UX Research, UX Design, Branding

Personas, information architecture, user flows, low-fidelity sketches, wireframing, prototyping, and user testing

Quantitative, Qualitative, Surveys, Market Analysis, Heuristic Evaluation.

My purpose and intentions.

As a home cook with a passion for food, I'm delving into the food industry for a project close to my hearttackling consumer-level food waste. My goal is not just to address the issue but also to inspire action in others, pushing myself in the process.

The challenge

Companies leaning heavily on blogs or other social media resources for waste reduction isn't hitting the mark. Users, with their varied preferences and busy schedules, most likely are not utilizing these resources.

"How can we develop an app with tools to help users reduce food waste in partnership with major food subscription companies?"

Uncovering that blogs aren't utilize enough.

At first I wanted to create an app that users can read about food blogs, but my directions turned after I surveyed 14 participants on MAZE.CO with targeted questions to observe their patterns: here are a few

1. How often do you discard produce?
2. Where do you find and revisit information on cutting food waste?
3. Interested in a food waste reduction app? What information would you like?

What my testers are saying

Summary of results

1. Showed low interest in apps solely focused on reading about food waste reduction (possibly indicating a low preference for food blogs).

2. The primary reason for forgetting about produce was common busyness and forgetfulness among users.

3. Used UX survey to validate my design idea(s) to see if a food blog app can be viable product.

What are the current actions of our food saving leaders? 

Exploring one of the food saving resources: blogs

I took sometime to explore Misfit's Market and Imperfect Food's website and blog for deeper understanding of their product. I took some notes (takeaways) and observed the information architecture of the website and blog.

Let's transition from blogs to a more user-focused technological solution.

In my market research and usability testing,  I believe I uncovered an exciting opportunity to elevate the performance of existing food waste industries.

While leading companies are doing well, there's always room for deeper user engagement. This could mean shifting focus from traditional blogs to introducing a third-party app that syncs with existing products (food subscriptions). This bridges a gap by delivering actionable food-saving features for users.

Who's in it?

Our users, aged 19-34, are tech-savvy, environmentally conscious, and busy individuals with food subscriptions. They have some cooking experience and a keen interest in making socially responsible choices.

Meet Jing

Initial user flows

Site Map

Wire Frames

Low Fid

I like to start with pencil and paper, I use the crazy 8's to ideate low fidelity screens.

Mid Fidelity + User Testing

Mid Fidelity Refined After User Testing

Reasons for changes:

High Fidelity + User Testing

High Fidelity Refined 1.0

High Fidelity Refined 2.0

Redesign: Before and after

Finished Prototype

Design System


General Learnings

1. UI Design: less is more
This was one one of my first UX project, I learned how to balance color and utilize color psychology. As well as follow the WCAG guidelines.

2. Organized Information architecture for a better UX experience

3. Having a well design navigation bar is important.

4. Balancing Imperfect Food's design systems into the app

Applied future learning

If I had more time, what would I add next?

Reminders & Notifications
Customizable Reminders:
Users set personalized alerts for items nearing expiration.
Push Notifications: System sends timely alerts for expiration items.

Inventory Sections
Fridge, freezer, and dry items are organized for easy navigation

Analytics for Insight
Saved and Waste Patterns:
Visual representation of users' food usage or waste trends.
Financial Impact: Insights into the financial benefits of waste reduction.

Smart Fridge Integration
Automated Updates:
Smart fridge syncs with the app for real-time inventory updates.

Just for fun:
A button that generate recipes by using random ingredients for folks who are adventurous or indecisive about what to cook next.