Food discovery and sharing app ingredient1 is one of the hottest food apps to recently emerge. With the ability to curate food choices based on the user’s personal preferences and mood, the app helps users to create a Food ID and discover new foods from a large variety of natural and organic brands. At the same time it enables the user to share newly discovered products and diets with friends and family.
20something talked to ingredient1 founder Taryn Fixel on how she came up with the concept for the app and about being a successful entrepreneur.
Taryn Fixel: I was an investigative and documentary journalist for almost a decade and I always had GI issues…it was a constant challenge trying to figure out what I could eat and where to find it. I wanted to communicate with people, who had similar challenges, the products that I found. Because my job was about organizing information and making information accessible, when I realized the value of a resource like this, which is organizing food information and making it easily sortable and accessible, I realized there was a need for a resource that could help people easily figure out what they could eat — so I started building one.
20something: So what exactly is ingredient1 in it’s simplest terms?
TF: ingredient1 is a personal food shopper.
On a much higher level if you think of Facebook as being your social id and your social network, and LinkedIn as your professional ID and your professional network. For me there is no place where a person says ‘this is who I am’ in food based on diet philosophy and taste, and then through that would discover what are the best choices for them.
Basically the mission is that ingredient1 removes the chaos from food and is really transforming the way people discover healthy and decadent foods, based on their diet, philosophies and tastes.
What would you say are the three top skills that you would attribute to being a successful entrepreneur?
The ability to let things go, the ability to adapt: You can’t be too attached to ideas. Just because something doesn’t work, it’s not a failure.
The ability to keep your energy focused: Staying where you are, remembering that you need to be there, at the end of the day it’s really important to be able to calm your mind. Focus is critical. It comes into my life in many ways.
— Karlie Kloss (@karliekloss) March 12, 2015
How do you feel ingredient1 reflects the millennial shift in consciousness in health and wellness choices?
TF: People don’t think of themselves as being on a diet anymore. They think of individuality — they’re thinking about food and how they work their lifestyle, which is reflected our food choice. ingredient1 caters to the kind of personalization that we’ve grown to expect from life, specifically from the food, but especially from the food and what we really want to highlight to the food industry is what people want.
So ingredient1 is empowering the voice of the millennial generation to demand better foods, by giving them access to information about better food.
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At what point do you think companies begin to notice the power that millennials have, pertaining to their food choices, and what goes into their grocery stores and the stocking of the shelves?
TF: I think they know it exists but there’s no actionable way to act efficiently about it. What I want in the grocery stores says nothing about me. They understand what I bought, but they don’t understand why I bought it. So maybe I would buy that great new granola if it didn’t have artificial sugar in it. Maybe I would buy the locally made almond milk, if it had cool interesting flavors. It’s a way for them to learn more about us, do people really want non GMO, do people really want gluten free, what cool flavors are they interested in.
— WeWork (@WeWork) December 8, 2015
TF: These companies spend so much money on the product development, but they have a challenge, they put a product out to the shelves, but there’s no real way of telling you about it, so there’s a major problem with the feedback loop. Food companies don’t know what people want, and when they do, there’s no effective way to get the right product into the hands of the right person. So through food with information, we’re creating a more efficient food ecosystem.
— Ingredient1 (@Ingredient1) December 15, 2015