Midland: ReFood app takes bite out of cafe and restaurant food waste

Crooked Spire Coffee House owner Mike Matich, left, and Ele Stojanoska hold the ReFood app outside the Midland caf. Picture: David Baylis.
Crooked Spire Coffee House owner Mike Matich, left, and Ele Stojanoska hold the ReFood app outside the Midland caf. Picture: David Baylis.

A SMARTPHONE app linking cafes and restaurants with local not-for-profits is making giving food easier to people in need.

Crooked Spire Coffee House in Midland was the first business to sign up for the ReFood app developed at Edith Cowan University.

Cafe owner Mike Matich said the app was easy to use.

“No one likes the idea of food being thrown away, so when I heard about the ReFood app and how it could help us link up with local not-for profits I was stoked to take part,” he said.

“All I have to do is enter what type of excess food I have, how much I have and what time it can be collected then wait for it to be picked up.”

The app trialled in the City of Swan fills a gap to help food outlets give away even small amounts directly to a not-for-profit in their community.

Crooked Spire Coffee House owner Mike Matich, left, and Ele Stojanoska hold the ReFood app outside the Midland caf. Picture: David Baylis.

ECU School of Medical and Health Sciences PhD candidate Ele Stojanoska created the community connection with the help of a $12,798 grant from Waste Authority WA.

“The main aim of the ReFood app is to both reduce the amount of food waste going into landfill and also making it much easier for small businesses to link up with not-for-profits to share food,” she said.

Not-for-profit DreambuildersCare provides emergency food relief and operates a low-cost supermarket in Midland.

Manager Ursula Dixon said the app was a great way for the not-for-profit sector and food businesses to work together to tackle food waste and food insecurity.

“I’m surprised someone hadn’t thought of the idea before,” she said.

Waste Authority Acting Chair Jenny Bloom said ReFood would help divert 65 per cent of municipal solid waste from landfill by 2020.

The app was developed with local business Community2Go.