After a six-month pilot period, customers can now participate in the process of conscious food-saving with the Munch app at each SPAR and INTERSPAR store, which offers 66 percent cheaper, faster and more convenient access to high-quality food products.
While many families still believe that it is wrong to throw food away, it is still a sad fact that one-third of the food produced in the world is wasted or becomes waste, which amounts to nearly 90 million tonnes of food thrown away every year in Europe alone. Although only 5% of food waste is generated in the retail sector1, SPAR Hungary considers reducing this an important part of its sustainability programme and has joined the Munch food rescue initiative for this reason.
Munch, one of the most innovative food rescue enterprises in Hungary, has been a strategic partner of SPAR Hungary since last November. The initiative, which is available through both an app and a website, offers a quick and convenient tool for food rescue. Users only have to reserve the selected package through the freely downloadable mobile app or the website, pay online and then pick it up in-store within a set time slot. This allows food that remains on the supply, but is still of good quality, to reach consumers at much lower than the market price.
At the Hungarian retail chain, vegetables, fruits, juices, packaged and unpackaged breads, bakery products, savoury and sweet delicacies, dairy products, pasta, salami, cold cuts, fresh eggs and other products that do not require refrigeration can be included in the SPAR Munch surprise packages, for a third of the original price, i.e. with a 66% discount. In practice, this means a “Munch price” of 1000 HUF for a package worth around 3000 HUF, and 500 HUF for a package worth 1500 HUF.
“In the last six months, from November 2022, we have been testing the Munch application at 19 SPAR supermarkets and 2 INTERSPAR hypermarkets in Budapest, Szeged and Hódmezővásárhely, and it has been very well received by our customers. This is why we have decided to make this service available in all SPAR and INTERSPAR stores throughout the country. The figures are impressive: in the past six months, more than 26 000 packages have found their way to the stores participating in the initiative, enabling saving nearly 26 tonnes of food,” – explained Márk Maczelka, head of communications at SPAR Hungary.
Munch is a platform created by Hungarian innovators with the aim of cutting food waste and promoting sustainable and responsible food trade, catering and consumption.
“We founded the company in the summer of 2020 as four university students and today we are already operating in three countries: Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Over the past two and a half years, we have saved nearly 800 000 meals through the Munch app, cutting nearly 2 million tonnes of carbon-dioxide emission. With our strategic partnership with SPAR, we have taken our efforts to reduce food waste to the next level by bringing food-saving to tens of thousands of consumers through the shoppers of one of the largest grocery retail chains in Hungary,” said Kirill Perepelica, the co-founder of Munch. He added that social responsibility is also important to them, which is why they have created a MunCharity product within the app, the purchase of which can be used to donate food to people in need.
“Munches” are not only useful, but also a surprise, as customers don’t know in advance exactly what will be in their package: it always contains whatever is waiting to be rescued that day. In addition to saving food, customers of the Hungarian retail chain can also discover new products, as they can learn about new dishes and recipes using the ingredients – this is supported by the Munch community, which is already active on social media, and which customers can join to get useful information and ideas.