All your ingredients neatly packaged and in one place. (Images via Foodlve)
Cooking is becoming less appealing as technology combined with food delivery is creating a sea of choices and accessibility.
While food delivery services make our lives easier and faster, they could also be a reason for the decline of the home-cooked meal.
But with Foodlve the opposite is true.
The Jordanian company operates US food social network The Cherry Share, which is much like Pinterest for food, and has recently launched a service in Jordan dubbed "Foodlve Meals" that delivers only the ingredients for the recipes presented on its website: in other words, the raw materials for the meal you buy online is delivered for you to cook.
Foodlve’s three main advantages are:
Exact quantities of food are provided so there is no waste. Instead of buying an expensive big portion of an ingredient that you would only use once, let’s say a salad dressing, Foodlve would provide you with the smaller quantity needed for your meal, for a cheaper price.
They claim to be a trustworthy source of healthy ingredients that are usually hard to find.
It reduces time spent on pre-cooking essentials such as finding a recipe, shopping and preparation.
Customers pay 5 Jordanian dinars ($7 USD) delivery fee if they receive their orders on the same day, 3 dinars ($4) if they receive them after 48 hours and nothing at all if they pick it up from Foodlve’s office at the Business Park.
Not online grocery, not food delivery
The business model of Foodlve can be placed between online grocery delivery services such as Khodarjy, and meal ordering apps such as ifood, as they deliver meal-specific groceries rather than items in bulk.
According to founder Nadia Shomali the model is new in Jordan, with the only competitor being Ojarz which delivers salads.
Another regional player is Yuzu, a Moroccan ingredient delivery service that aims to introduce a healthy alternative to Mcdonald’s.
As for an American version of this model, Blue Apron is a very successful example.
Shomali (second from right) with the Foodlve team in Jordan and Princess Sumaya bint al-Hassan (center).
Quality as top priority
Rather than focusing on efficiency as a pillar to her business, Shomali is focussed on quality.
“We are not concentrating on what’s easier and faster… we want to make [the customer] feel better,” she told Wamda during a Skype interview. “We use technology to improve people’s lives, and one of the most important [assets] in life is health. If health is obtained, the brain functions well, and everything else is good.”
Instead of crossing out the cooking process in favor of time, Shomali manages to be time considerate without compromising the cooking experience - they do this by reducing the number of pre-cooking tasks such as shopping and preparation, without stripping off authenticity.
Shomali has even compromised for people who prefer time over cooking but still want to be healthy. Fast Meals and Office Meals are two categories that cater to these people and include tacos, salads and snacks. Some office meals take five minutes to prepare, Shomali said.
The founder believes that Foodlve provides alternative options to unhealthy quick meals, it also proves that delicious does not necessarily mean unhealthy.
An interesting feature Foodlve is still working on incorporating into its service is the“tracking and analyzing” tool. Shomali explains that users will be able to track their meal consumption and get weekly recommendations on how to improve their food intake based on their profiles.
Foodlve is currently working on an app and is planning to expand to UAE once it reaches a target of 4000 weekly meals in Jordan.