App Updated

2.0: National Expansion, Recipes and a Move

by
Joe Dunn


It’s been a few months since the last update and I want to address the leap from launching on the App Store to now. Just a few weeks ago, we launched version 2.0 - an update featuring both national restaurant coverage and recipes.

One of the challenges we have faced with building a personalized nutrition scoring platform is the content - specifically with restaurants. There are over 600,000 restaurants in the United States and roughly 350,000 of those are considered ‘local’ with only a handful of locations. These restaurants have no legal obligation to publish meal nutrition data and almost always don’t. There may be some crowdsourced meal data for select local restaurants on MyFitnessPal, but this is typically inaccurate. It’s a bottleneck that were fully aware of and willing to take on by creating a platform that enabled these restaurants to submit their meal recipes they see as a good fit for nutrition scoring.

Knowing this was creating a complex two-sided market, we were receiving a lot of feedback from users about recipes and immediately began plans to incorporate them last fall. We started researching different licensing deals with some of the largest recipe databases but encountered an issue. Since we’re going the extra step to personalize meal scoring, querying their databases via API calls would not work. We would need all of the recipe nutrition data to provide the best possible experience.

So, in short, we had a content problem that required some time to figure out. Admittedly, we haven’t yet solved the local restaurant content but know this will need to be accomplished through user-generated (or restaurant-generated) meals. All of that is in the works.

Now for the most important part of this update: we’re moving to San Francisco! It became clear around this time last year that it is not only the epicenter for tech, but also personalized nutrition and bioscience. As a company converging with all of those, it made too much sense. I type all of this with excitement and some sadness. It’s really bittersweet to leave a city I truly love and have lived in for the vast majority of life. But now it’s time to take the next leap right to where all the innovation is happening.